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News Service

News Service:

Annette Hacker, manager, (515) 294-3720

Office: (515) 294-4777

03-23-05

Contact:

Teddi Barron, News Service, (515) 294-4778

NEWS TIP: Iowa State experts can comment on sale of unapproved biotech corn

AMES, Iowa -- Yesterday it was announced that Syngenta inadvertently sold unapproved biotech corn to farmers from 2001 through 2004. As the details unfold, the following Iowa State University faculty experts can provide perspective for the media.

Jeff Wolt, biotechnology risk analyst

Wolt can discuss issues surrounding the risk posed by the use of the unapproved biotech corn. He is a professor of agronomy with Iowa State's Biosafety Institute for Genetically Modified Agricultural Products. He is developing methods for assessing and communicating risk of genetically modified agricultural products for the purpose of public policy decision making. He can be reached at (515) 294-6899 or jdwolt@iastate.edu.

Lisa Lorenzen, biotechnology industry specialist

Lorenzen can talk about how the Syngenta incident could impact the agricultural biotechnology industry and people's perception of the technology and acceptance of non-food biotech products. Lorenzen holds a Ph.D. in genetics and is the director of industry relations and biotechnology liaison for Iowa State University. She is can be reached at (515) 294-0926 or llorenze@iastate.edu.

Patrick Schnable, corn molecular geneticist

Schnable can give a genetic perspective on the differences between the approved and unapproved corn varieties. Schnable is director of the Center for Plant Genomics, professor of agronomy, and professor of genetics, development and cell biology. He leads Iowa State's Maize (corn) Genetic Mapping Project, which is funded by the National Science Foundation. He may be reached at (515) 294-0975, or schnable@iastate.edu.

Stephen Howell, plant molecular geneticist

Howell can discuss the science behind why the use of the unapproved corn is not a human health issue. Howell is director of the Plant Sciences Institute, an umbrella organization over nine research centers focused on producing new technologies, ideas and services that yield better crops, healthier foods and a stronger economy. He is a professor of genetics, development and cell biology and the author of the book, "Molecular Genetics of Plant Development." He can be reached at (515) 294-5267, (515) 294-5252, or hh@iastate.edu.

Quick look

Yesterday it was announced that Syngenta inadvertently sold unapproved biotech corn to farmers from 2001 through 2004. As the details unfold, Iowa State University faculty experts can provide perspective for the media.