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Unintended Effects of Genetic Manipulation
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Overview Publications

We include in this bibliography publications that present overviews of genetic engineering with information and references concerning unintended, nontarget effects of genetic manipulation. The publications are written from a variety of perspectives, both in relation to content (e.g. health concerns or environmental impact) and to author assessments of the importance of unintended effects.

To browse or search our reports on unintended effects, click here. To see a bibliography of the articles cited in these reports, click here.

Affifi, R. (2016). “The Semiosis of ‘Side Effects’ in Genetic Interventions.” Biosemiotics, pp. 1-20. doi:10.1007/s12304-016-9274-3.

Andow, D. A. and A. Hilbeck (2004). "Science-based Risk Assessment for Non-target Effects of Transgenic Crops." BioScience vol. 54, pp. 637-49.

Benbrook, C. M. (2004). "Genetically Engineered Crops and Pesticide Use in the United States: The First Nine Years," BioTech InfoNet Technical Paper #7.

Cadeira, A. L. and S. O. Duke (2006). "The Current Status and Environmental Impacts of Glyphosate-Resistant Crops: A Review," Journal of Environmental Quality vol. 35, pp. 1633-58.

Cellini, F., A. Chesson, I. Colquhoun, A. Constable et al. (2004). "Unintended Effects and Their Detection in Genetically Modified Crops," Food and Chemical Toxicology vol. 42, pp. 1089-1125.

Clark, E. A. (2006). "Environmental Risks of Genetic Engineering," Euphytica vol. 148, pp. 47-60.

Cleveland D. A. and D. Solieri (2005). "Rethinking the Risk Management Process for Genetically Engineered Crop Varieties in Small-scale, Traditionally Based Agricutlture," Ecology and Society vol. 10, issue 1, article 9. Available online:

Coalition for a GM-free India (2013). Adverse Impacts of Transgenic Crops/Food. Second Edition. Available online:

Dunfield, K. E. and J. J. Germida (2004). "Impact of Genetically Modified Crops on Soil and Plant-Associated Microbial Communities," Journal of Environmental Quality vol. 33, pp. 806-815.

Filipecki, M. and S. Malepszy (2006). "Unintended Consequences of Plant Transformation: A Molecular Insight," Journal of Applied Genetics vol. 47, pp. 277-86.

Flachowsky G., K. Aulrich, H. Böhme, and I. Halle (2007). "Studies on Feeds from Genetically Modified Plants (GMP) - Contributions to Nutritional and Safety Assessment, " Animal Feed Science and Technology vol. 133, pp. 2-30.

Freese, W. and D. Schubert (2004). "Safety Testing and Regulation of Genetically Engineered Foods," Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering Reviews vol. 21, pp. 299-324.

Gepts, P. (2002). "A Comparison Between Crop Domestication, Classical Plant Breeding, and Genetic Engineering," Crop Science vol. 41, pp. 1780-90.

Gurian-Sherman, D. (2004). A Look at the Unintended Effects of Genetically Engineering Food Plants. Re: the National Academy Sciences Report Unintended Effects. Briefing Paper. Washington, DC: The Center for Food Safety.

Gurian-Sherman, D. (2006). Contaminating the Wild? Gene Flow from Experimental Field Trials of Genetically Engineered Crops to Related Wild Plants. Washington, D.C.: Center for Food Safety.

Halsberger, A. G. (2003). "Codex Guidelines for GM Foods Include the Analysis of Unintended Effects," Nature Biotechnology vol. 21, pp. 739-741.

Kuiper, H A., G. A. Kleter, H. Noteborn and E. J. Kok (2001). "Assessment of the Food Safety Issues Related to Genetically Modified Foods," The Plant Journal vol. 27, pp. 503-28.

Larkin, P. and G. G. Harrigan (2007). "Opportunities and Surprises in Crops Modified by Transgenic Technology: Metabolic Engineering of Benzylisoquinoline Alkaloid, Gossypol and Lysine Biosynthetic Pathways," Metabolomics vol. 3, pp. 371-82.

Latham, J. R., A. K. Wilson, R. A. Steinbrecher et al. (2006). "The Mutational Consequences of Plant Transformation," Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology Article ID: 25376, pp. 1-7.

Mallory-Smith C. and M. Zapiola (2008). "Review: Gene Flow from Glyphosate-Resistant Crops," Pest Management Science DOI: 10.1002/ps

Marvier, M. (2001). "Ecology of Transgenic Crops," American Scientist vol. 89, pp. 160-67.

Marvier, M., C. McCreedy, J. Regetz, and P.Kareiva (undated). Nontarget effects of Bt crops database.

Matzke, M. A., M. F. Mette and A. J. M. Matzke (2000). "Transgene Silencing by the Host Genome Defense: Implications for the Evolution of Epigenetic Control Mechanisms in Plants and Vertebrates," Plant Molecular Biology vol. 43, pp. 401-15.

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (2016). Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi:10.17226/23395.

National Research Council and Institute of Medicine of the National Academies (2004). Safety of Genetically Engineered Food: Approaches to Assessing Unintended Health Effects. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Pilson, D. and H. R. Prendeville (2004). "Ecological Effects of Transgenic Crops and the Escape of Transgenes into Wild Populations," Annu. Rev Ecol. Evol. Syst. Vol. 35, pp. 149-74.

Pryme, I. F. and R. Lembcke (2003). "In Vivo Studies on Possible Health Consequences of Genetically Modified Food and Feed-With Particular Regard to Ingredients Consisting of Genetically Modified Plant Materials," Nutrition and Health Vol. 17, pp. 1-8.

Rischer, H. and K.-M. Oksman-Caldentey (2007). "Unintended Effects in Genetically Modified Crops: Revealed by Metabolomics?" Trends in Biotechnologyvol. 24, pp. 102-4.

Royal Society of Canada (2001): Elements of Precaution: Recommendations for the Regulation of Food Biotechnology in Canada. Ottawa.

Shirai, Y. (2006). "Nontarget Effects of Transgenic Insecticidal Crops: Overview to Date and Future Challenges," Jpn. J. Appl. Entomol. Zool. Vol. 51, pp. 165-86. [Article in Japanese; numerous references in English.]

Smith, J. (2007). Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods. Fairfield, IA: Yes! Books.

Snow. A. A., D. A. Andow, P. Gepts, E. M. Hallerman et al. (2005). "Genetically Engineered Organisms and the Environment: Current Status and Recommendations," Ecological Applications vol. 15, pp. 377-404. (Position paper of the Ecological Society of America.)

Spök, A., H. Hofer, R. Valenta., K. Kienzl-Plochberger et al. (2001). Toxicological and Allergological safety evaluation of GMO. English summary of Monograph 109, Report by Federal Environment Agency, Vienna, Austria.

Traynor, P. L. and J. H. Westwood, Eds. (1999). Proceedings of a Workshop on Ecological Effects of Pest Resistance Genes in Managed Ecosystems. Blacksburg, VA: Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Link no longer available:

Wilson, A. J. Latham, and R. Steinbrecher (2004). "Genome Scrambling-Myth or Reality?" EcoNexus Technical Report October 2004.

Wilson, Allison K., Jonathan R. Latham and Ricarda A. Steinbrecher (2006). "Transformation-induced Mutations in Transgenic Plants: Analysis and Biosafety Implications," Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering Reviews vol. 23, pp. 209-37. Link no longer available:

Wolfenbarger, L. (2003). Annotated Bibliographies for Environmental/Ecological Impacts of Transgenic Organisms: Animals, Microorganisms, Plants I - Gene Flow, Plants II - Unintended Effects, Plants III - Resistance Management. Link no longer available:

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