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OGTR receives new application for transgenic cotton

(Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2003 -- CropChoice news) -- From a press release.

The Australian Office of the Gene Technology Regulator has received an application for a licence which, if approved, would enable the continued commercial release of a genetically modified cotton.

The application from Monsanto Australia Limited (Monsanto) proposes continued commercial release of a genetically modified insecticidal (INGARD) cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) into the environment in the existing cotton growing areas of New South Wales and Queensland.

INGARD cotton contains an insecticidal gene, derived from a common soil bacterium. This gene produces a protein that is toxic to certain insects, including the major caterpillar pests of cotton.

INGARD cotton also contains a selectable maker gene that codes for antibiotic resistance.

The commercial release of INGARD cotton was originally approved under the previous voluntary system. The Regulator is now accepting written submissions from the public and interested organisations on matters relating to the protection of human health and the environment in order to finalise this plan. Submissions should be forwarded to the Regulator by close of business on 14 March 2003.

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