Report

A Meta-Analysis of Effects of Bt Cotton and Maize on Nontarget Invertebrates

Science  08 Jun 2007:
Vol. 316, Issue 5830, pp. 1475-1477
DOI: 10.1126/science.1139208

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Abstract

Although scores of experiments have examined the ecological consequences of transgenic Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) crops, debates continue regarding the nontarget impacts of this technology. Quantitative reviews of existing studies are crucial for better gauging risks and improving future risk assessments. To encourage evidence-based risk analyses, we constructed a searchable database for nontarget effects of Bt crops. A meta-analysis of 42 field experiments indicates that nontarget invertebrates are generally more abundant in Bt cotton and Bt maize fields than in nontransgenic fields managed with insecticides. However, in comparison with insecticide-free control fields, certain nontarget taxa are less abundant in Bt fields.

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