Caen, 14 December 2009: In what is being described as the first ever and most comprehensive study of
three major GMOs about assessing the effects on mammalian health, researchers from CRIIGEN and
Universities of Caen and Rouen have highlighted a number of new sex and often dose dependent side
effects linked with their consumption. Their study of the 90-day feeding trials data of insecticide
producing Mon 810, Mon 863 and Roundup herbicide absorbing NK 603 varieties of GM maize clearly
underlines adverse impacts on kidneys and liver, the dietary detoxifying organs, as well as different levels
of damages to heart, adrenal glands, spleen and haematopoietic system. Ironically, the confidential raw
data of Monsanto about feeding trials on rats that these researchers have analyzed allowed the
international authorization of these three commercialized GMOs in different parts of the world.
Although different level of adverse impact on vital organs were noticed between the three GMOs, the
research done by J. Spiroux de Vendomois, F. Roullier, D. Cellier and G.E. Seralini and appeared in the
International Journal of Biological Sciences shows specific effects associated with consumption of
each GMO, differentiated by sex and dose. Their research follows in the wake of European Governments
obtaining the raw data related to feeding of rats for 90 days and making it publically available for scrutiny
The researchers have concluded that all the 3 GMOs that they have studied contain novel pesticide
residues that will be present in food and feed and may pose grave health risks to those consuming them.
They have, therefore, called for immediate prohibition on the import and cultivation of these GMOs and
have strongly recommended additional long-term (up to 2 years) and multi-generational animal feeding
studies on at least three species to provide true scientifically valid data on the acute and chronic toxic
effects of GM crops, feed and foods.
CRIIGEN denounces in particular the past opinions of EFSA, AFSSA and CGB, committees of
European and French Food Safety Authorities, and others who spoke on the lack of risks on the tests
which were conducted just for 90 days on rats to assess the safety of these three GM varieties of maize.
While criticizing their failure to examine the detailed statistics, CRIIGEN also emphasizes the conflict of
interest and incompetence of these committees to counter expertise this publication as they have already
voted positively on the same tests ignoring the side effects.
Prof. Gilles-Eric SERALINI, firstname.lastname@example.org; tel. 33 2 31 56 56 84, or 33 6 70 80 20 87.
de Vendômois JS, Roullier F, Cellier D, Séralini GE. A Comparison of the Effects of Three GM Corn
Varieties on Mammalian Health. Int J Biol Sci 2009; 5:706-726. Available from
An Austrian study has just been published. It is a laboratory report, of the same kind as those provided by Monsanto to the States, with a view to obtain GMO authorizations. It corresponds to the most detailed study ever conducted in the world on laboratory animals, i.e., mice eating commercialized GMOs over several generations. As this is sometimes done to study the secondary effects of pesticides and medicines before they are commercialized.
Monsanto reports that are much less detailed have been approved by numerous governments worldwide. In general they do not mention animal reproduction, and there are two types of experiments conducted: multi-generations (MGS), multi-litters (RACB) for the same parents. The second experiment seems to highlight more significant differences, but the first quoted sentence bears on MGS: “The production parameters average litter size and weight as well as number of weaned pups were in favour of the ISO group”. (That is to say in disfavour of the group treated with GMOs: ISO is the real control group, REF is another control with a non-transgenic maize which differs noticeably from the control and is not equivalent in substance). Such differences are also observed with the multi-litter experiment and they become statistically significant for the 3rd and 4th litters." There are also some effects on the kidneys as highlighted by CRIIGEN with MON863.
However this study was much debated, specifically since there were some calculation errors apparently and the authors went back on some of their results. It has now become quite difficult to untangle truthfulness and relevance in the details of that type of study, which nonetheless remains original and unique. Quoting this study is not even allowed! In this case,for a scientific study which is not published, nor peer-reviewed in a scientific journal with a reading panel, the limits are reached. Here is the very reason why the experimental references of CRIIGEN are always published.
Also, a long-term experiment on adults could be found in this study. This confirms CRIIGEN’s suspicions of secondary effects with all commercialized GMOs.
Austria, backed by Ireland, Italy, Poland, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Cyprus, Hungary, Malta, Greece and Slovakia, asked the Commission to consider, on the basis of an initiative of the main competent authority, the taking into account of appropiate measures in order to adjourn or limit the authorization of MON 863.
Austria suggested that a new long-term study on MON 863 maize should be carried out, based on modern toxicological methods, which should be appropriate to assess the biological performances of animals fed on this specific GMO. Such a study would need a long observation period, as a study of subchronic toxicity.
"New analysis of a rat feeding study with a genetically modified maize reveals signs of hepatorenal toxicity" by Gilles-Eric Séralini, Dominique Cellier, and Joël Spiroux de Vendomois. For the first time in the world, a study on the health risks of a GM maize authorized for consumption shows signs of hepatorenal toxicity. It is a countervaluation performed by CRIIGEN (France), of a regulatory study by the Monsanto Company, on rats fed with a GM maize (MON 863) over a three-month period.
Paper reference: Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 52, 596–602 (2007) http://www.springerlink.com DOI: 10.1007/s00244-006-0149-5
Press release of New analysis of a rat feeding study with a genetically modified maize reveals signs of hepatorenal toxicity
In June 2007, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) issued a press release describing recent analyses of our publication in an international journal. Our study represents to date the most detailed statistical peer-reviewed paper on one of the longest toxicological studies on a commercialized GMO.
After careful consideration of the June 28 EFSA review on the GM maize MON 863 toxicological test, we indicate here our 5 main points of disagreement for the international scientific community, government authorities and the public. These are listed below by order of importance with EFSA views and supporting organisations or societies:
Following your article entitled: “European Experts claim GMO is harmless*” page 12 in the Figaro dated from 14-15 July 2007, we would like to draw your attention on a number of inaccuracies. Your article focuses on the reactions of the European Agency EFSA and of the French Commission CGB following our scientific paper entitled "New Analysis of a Rat Feeding Study with a Genetically Modified Maize Reveals Signs of Hepatorenal Toxicity by G.E. Séralini, D. Cellier & J. Spiroux de Vendômois, Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 52, 596–602 (2007)".
On 29 May 2007, we were summoned before the Commission about the international publication of our study on the signs of toxicity of the MON863 GMO maize. But due to the very conditions of the meeting, we never had a chance to express ourselves on the substance of our work.
We would like to underline in particular that the first point had to do with the weight charts of the rats and was relying on a report that was never forwarded to us, and that is a shame, because if we had had this report, a serene discussion on the matter would have ensued, however the question of the weight charts, I do wish to underline this, is not the focus point in our paper.
The purpose of the present letter is to clarify certain elements. We confirm that our analysis is adequate after having studied your report. Our pragmatic approach consisted in initiating our study on average experimental curves. Moreover, all the possible comparisons with MON 863 hybrids would not enable us to conclude: on the one hand the insecticide levels are not well characterized and they are different too (if the effects we have been observing are actually due to the insecticide). On the other hand, the various genetic modifications prevent us from drawing, because of the possible interactions, a definite conclusion on these results. Furthermore, no statistics as thorough as ours were ever produced for the hybrids.
NK 603 is a GM maize of the first generation, the first category of GMOs (the most important in the world, almost three-quarters of them) which were introduced onto the market. It is genetically modified to tolerate a herbicide. The first generation of GMOs in commercial use on open fields since 1995 either tolerate a pesticide in the first category (71% of GMOs - like Monsanto's RR soya or NK 603 maize - for instance tolerate primarily the Roundup herbicide) or produce a pesticide in the second category (generally, with artificial Bt toxins as in MON 810 or MON 863 maize, around one kg per ha; these different insecticides are produced in 18 % of GMOs). The second generation of GMOs (11% of total) developed as from 1998 do both: they produce and tolerate a pesticide...
Not a single question was submitted to CRIIGEN by AFSSA during this analysis. However we wish to underline that a number of errors seem to have found their way into AFSSA’s official opinion, but this probably due to a rather speedy reading of the above mentioned publication.