GEAC to approve 4 new BT cotton hybrids

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New Delhi, Apr 2 (UNI)The Genetic Engineering Approval Committee(GEAC) is likely to give permission to four new transgenic stack cotton hybrids to conduct multi-locational research trials in Northern States.

The permission has been sought by the Maharashtra Hybrid Seeds (Mahyco), an associate of American multinational giant Monsanto, for four transgenic stack cotton hybrids which include MRC 7017 BG-II RRF, MRC 7031 BG-II RRF, MRC 7041 BG-II RRF and MRC 7045 BG-II RRF containing staked cry1Ac and cry2Ab genes (MON 15985) and CP4 EPSPS Event (MON 88913).

The GEAC, attached to the Environment Ministry, met here today and considered the applications for commercial release of BT cotton expressing approved gene events along with other issues.

Among other Bt variants which were part of discussion included Hybrids expressing Cry 1 Ac gene (MON 531 event), Hybrids expressing stacked genes Cry 1AC&Cry 2Ab (Mon 15985 event), Hybrids expressing genes (Cry 1Ab -Cry 1Ac ) "GFM Cry 1A" and Hybrids expressing Cry 1Ac event -1.

Also came for discussion were the request for field trial and of BT cotton expressing approved gene events in the North Zone during Kharif, 2008 as recommended by the Regualtory Committee on Genetically Modified Crops (RCGM) The meeting also considered Revalidation of GEAC Permission for Large Scale trials and seed production with SP 499(Cry 1AC&Cry 2Ab) -(Mon -15985) gene in the North Zone by Bayer Biosciences.

Mahyco's application seeking permission for conducting Experimental seed production of BT Brinjal , conduct of the MLRT with BT okra hybrid at Nadia District, West Bengal was also examined . Besides the GEAC also discussed the guidelines for the Conduct of Confined Field Trials of Regulated, Genetically Engineered Plants in India and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

UNI/JSS SG KP2128

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