GMOs: Friend or Foe

Timothy Winland

Genetically modified organisms are a source of controversy with strong argument on both sides of the fence. The following points to the causes and some possible answers considering the use of GMOs.
Many chronic illnesses may be linked to GMO's and the environment in which they thrive. Cardiovascular Disease, Alzheimer's, Autism, reproductive disorders, Obesity and Vitamin D deficiency are but a few of the afflictions that are suspected to be linked to GMOs. GMOs are modified to withstand the effects of an herbicide, glyphosate. Glyphosate has a negative affect on gut flora that can lead to serious problems in humans which can allow opportunistic pathogens to take root and thrive. (D'Brant, J, 2014)
I light of these findings this knowledge can be used to deduct possible sources of afflictions linked to GMOs and the environment from which they are grown. If GMOs in fact cause diseases or create an opportunity for disease to flourish when consumed then there would be considerable impact on the future of medicine practices by potentially increasing need for healthcare and healthcare professionals exponentially. The nurse, with this information, can educate patients appropriately concerning nutrition and what causes or aggravates the clients concern.
Microorganisms are being engineered to invade and destroy cancer cells. Modified E. Coli is capable of targeting a number of different cancer cells and by specific reprogramming can be directed to target specific cancers. Y. pseudo-tuberculosis, Vibrio cholerae, Clostridum, Bifidobacterium, Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes are also part of this research.
This cutting edge technology has been represented in the Journal of molecular biology and is worthy of our attention. This type of modification could potentially render cancer as insignificant as the common cold. It could change the field of oncology drastically as well as the pharmaceutical industry concerning cancer medications. Nurses would need be properly educated so that proper patient education and referrals are made.
GMO's have been a tremendous source of controversy. The fact remains they have been a great part of our food supply and appear to be a part of our medical future. Food supplies are pest resistant and abundant while possibly causing health issues. The use of Medicinal GMOs remains to be seen but shows great promise. We shall see.

Anderson, J. C., Clarke, E. J., Arkin, A. P., & Voigt, C. A. (2006). Environmentally controlled invasion of cancer cells by engineered bacteria. Journal of Molecular Biology,355(4), 619-627. doi:10.1016/j.jmb.2005.10.076

D'Brant, J. (2014). GMOs, Gut Flora, the Shikimate Pathway and Cytochrome Dysregulation. Nutritional Perspectives: Journal Of The Council On Nutrition, 37(1), 5-12