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Post at: Jul 29 2022

Guidelines for Safety Assessment of Genome Edited Plants, 2022

Why in News ? 

  • The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) has issued Guidelines for Safety Assessment of Genome Edited Plants, 2022.

Objective

  • The guidelines are expected to bring transformationd change in product development and commercialisation.

About Guidelines 

  • The guidelines easing norms for research into Genetically Modified (GM) crops and circumventing challenges of using foreign genes to change crops profile.
    • Earlier, the Government has allowed genome-edited plants without the cumbersome GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms) regulation at the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC).

  • The Environment Ministry, in a notification in March 2022, had exempted certain types of genome-edited crops from the stringent biosafety regulations applicable to genetically-modified (GM) crops. 
    • The ministry had exempted site directed nuclease (SDN) 1 and 2 genomes from rules 7-11 of the Environment Protection Act, thus allowing to avoid a long process for approval of GM crops through the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC).
  • The ‘Guidelines for Safety Assessment of Genome Edited Plants, 2022’ exempt researchers who use gene-editing technology to modify the genome of the plant from seeking approvals from the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC), an expert body of the Environment Ministry.
  • The GEAC evaluates research into GM plants and recommends, or disapproves, their release into farmer fields.
  • The final call, however, is taken by the Environment Ministry as well as States where such plants could be cultivated. The Environment Ministry too has sanctioned this exemption.

 

 

 


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