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Southampton Health Technology Assessments CentreNews

Environmental risk assessment for genetically modified organisms

Published: 5 November 2015
Maize field
Research on GMOs is a contentious area

Dr Geoff Frampton from SHTAC is attending the final meeting of the European Seventh Framework project “GRACE” – GMO Risk Assessment and Communication of Evidence in Germany. The project is investigating whether evidence synthesis approaches such as systematic reviews and systematic maps could assist the communication of evidence relating to the environmental impacts of genetically modified organisms.

Research on genetically modified organisms (GMO) is a contentious area due to the differing opinions and interests of the various stakeholders involved, which include the general public, farmers, risk assessment agencies, non-governmental organisations, and biotechnology companies. Systematic reviews and systematic maps are robust and transparent ways to identify, analyse and communicate evidence which might have potential to improve the communication of evidence and reduce the risk of bias in GMO research. The European Seventh Framework project GRACE (GMO Risk Assessment and Communication of Evidence) has been evaluating whether systematic reviews and systematic maps could improve the communication of evidence about the impacts of GMO (particularly genetically modified crops) on the environment, human health and socio-economic indicators.

Geoff will chair a session of talks on Good Practice in Evidence Synthesis at the project’s Final Conference on 9-10 November in Potsdam, Germany. Geoff is also the chair of the project’s Advisory Board and will participate in a panel discussion on Systematic Reviews and Evidence Maps in GMO Risk and Benefit Assessment at the Final Conference meeting.

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