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GM field trial threatened by vandals publishes results

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GM field trial threatened by vandals publishes results

25 June 2015

Scientists ready to answer your questions on new study results.

In May 2012 researchers at the publicly funded Rothamsted Research were threatened by a group intent on vandalising a field trial of aphid resistant GM wheat. At the time the scientists appealed for discussion not destruction of their trial, and as part of our Don’t Destroy Research campaign more than 6000 people gave their support to the researchers. Today, thanks to that support, the results of that field trial have been published in the peer reviewed journal Scientific Reports. The scientists found that the alteration of the plants was successful but when grown in the field the plants did not repel aphids.

Professor Huw Jones, one of the scientists involved in the study and a member of our plant science panel will be answering questions about what the findings from this study mean and what the next steps are for the scientists at Rothamsted. The researchers have already answered some questions in this short Q&A.

If you have general queries about plant science email us and we will put your question directly to the relevant researcher via the plant science panel. You can also ask via Facebook, Twitter (@senseaboutsci using #plantsci) or submit online.

Professor Jones asked us to pass on his thanks to those who supported the Don’t Destroy Research petition:

“Three years ago we were faced with threats of vandalism as a result of trying to conduct experiments aimed at finding a sustainable way to reduce the use of agricultural chemicals. Your support was a huge help during an incredibly difficult time and thankfully the threatening minority were not able to prevent the trial going ahead. The publication of the results of that trial today is a success for the scientific process that allows gathering of knowledge to find out what works.”

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Source: Sense About Science

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