Vol.8 No.1 (2013)

A long-term toxicology study on pigs fed a combined genetically modified (GM) soy and GM maize diet

Judy A. Carman1,2*, Howard R. Vlieger3, Larry J. Ver Steeg4, Verlyn E.
Sneller3, Garth W. Robinson5**, Catherine A. Clinch-Jones1, Julie I.
Haynes6, John W. Edwards2

A significant number of genetically modified (GM) crops have been approved to enter human food and animal feed since 1996, including crops containing several GM genes 'stacked' into the one plant. We randomised and fed isowean pigs (N=168) either a mixed GM soy and GM corn (maize) diet (N=84) or an equivalent non-GM diet (N=84) in a longterm toxicology study of 22.7 weeks (the normal lifespan of a commercial pig from weaning to slaughter). Equal numbers of male and female pigs were present in each group. The GM corn contained double and triple-stacked varieties. Feed intake, weight gain, mortality and blood biochemistry were measured. Organ weights and pathology were determined post-mortem. There were no differences between pigs fed the GM and non-GM diets for feed intake, weight gain, mortality, and routine blood biochemistry measurements. The GM diet was associated with gastric and uterine differences in pigs. GM-fed pigs had uteri that were 25% heavier than non-GM fed pigs (p=0.025). GM-fed pigs had a higher rate of severe stomach inflammation with a rate of 32% of GM-fed pigs compared to 12% of non-GM-fed pigs (p=0.004). The severe stomach inflammation was worse in GM-fed males compared to non-GM fed males by a factor of 4.0 (p=0.041), and GM-fed females compared to non-GM fed females by a factor of 2.2 (p=0.034).

Key words: GMO, GM corn, GM soy, GM animal feed, toxicology, stomach inflammation, uterus weight..


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Author Contact

1 Institute of Health and Environmental Research, Kensington Park, SA, Australia.


2 Health and the Environment, School of the Environment, Flinders University, Bedford
Park, SA, Australia.


3 Verity Farms, Maurice, Iowa, USA.


4 Ana-Tech, Monroe, Wisconsin, USA.


5 Sioux Center Veterinary Clinic, Sioux Center, Iowa, USA.


6 School of Medical Sciences, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA, Australia.


* Email:,
** Present: Robinson Veterinary Services PC, Sioux Centre, Iowa, USA.



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