Seralini’s paper about rats with tumors from GM food is RETRACTED

An extremely controversial paper that made waves in the media over a year ago has FINALLY been retracted because it’s a piece of crap.

We covered the story in three pieces from September to November of 2012. The paper was universally panned as terrible science that did not support the conclusions which were obviously biased against genetically modified foods. Problems with study methodology, statistics, reporting, bias/conflict of interest and mechanism were been raised. It should not have been approved for publication in the first place.

Study linking GM maize to rat tumours is retracted.

Bowing to scientists’ near-universal scorn, the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology today fulfilled its threat to retract a controversial paper that claimed that a genetically modified (GM) maize causes serious disease in rats after the authors refused to withdraw it.

The paper, from a research group led by Gilles-Eric Séralini, a molecular biologist at the University of Caen, France, and published in 2012, showed “no evidence of fraud or intentional misrepresentation of the data”, said a statement from Elsevier, which publishes the journal. But the small number and type of animals used in the study means that “no definitive conclusions can be reached”. The known high incidence of tumours in the Sprague-Dawley rat  ”cannot be excluded as the cause of the higher mortality and incidence observed in the treated groups”, it added.

The study found that rats fed for two years with Monsanto’s glysphosate-resistant NK 603 corn developed many more tumours and died earlier than controls. It also found that the rats developed tumours when glyphosate was added to their drinking water.

EFSA and Germany’s Federal Institute for Risk Assessment In Berlin heavily criticized the paper for inadequate data. So did everyone else.

The co-author and medical doctor Joël Spiroux, who is president of the Paris-based Committee for Research and Independent Information on Genetic Engineering (CRIIGEN), calls the retraction is “a public-health scandal”. No, that was what YOU want GM maize to be, but it’s not. The data is NOT THERE and your one poorly done study deserved to be thrown out.


Controversial Seralini GMO-rats paper to be retracted | Retraction Watch.

As Ivan notes, there is a lot to chew on here.


  17 comments for “Seralini’s paper about rats with tumors from GM food is RETRACTED

  1. Chris Howard
    November 28, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    And the sad part is the damage is already done.

  2. One Eyed Jack
    November 28, 2013 at 7:15 PM

    This will not stop the anti-GMO fanatics one bit from citing it. It’s part of the rhetoric now.

  3. November 28, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    While this is certainly a blow to the anti-GMO propagandists, odds are they will do the same thing that the anti-vaccine propagandists have do with the Wakefield “study” after it was retracted: claim that there is a conspiracy against the study, or completely ignore the fact that it was retracted and continue to present it as “evidence”, while deleting any comments on their websites that says otherwise.

  4. One Eyed Jack
    November 28, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    It won’t be much of a stretch. They already blame Monsanto for every evil under the sun. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone rewrites Genesis so the snake tempting Eve into eating the apple will be a Monsanto executive.

  5. Frederick
    November 28, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    Anti-vaccine Crazies don’t stop talking about Wakefield, Anti-gmo won’t stop.
    they seem to don’t undestand how genetic work. They also forget that even his control group had tumor ( because the rat he use grow tumour all the time) they also forget that tumour is not egal cancer. And
    when you tell them that human have been genetically altering plant and animal for centuries and even for thousands of years, they look at you like you arestupid. Yeah man, cross-breeding, hybridation and selection are genetic manipulation.
    the fact that 500 years ago they did not new it was that, does not change the fact that it was. I have lots of Eco friend, they are nice and we agree on lot of subject, but GMO and CAM are always a hot topic.

    That french fraud of scientific is not at his first anti-gmo ( that last study was 100% finance by anti-GMO group talk about conflict of interest) coup d’éclat There is a good French site : with a lot of info about science of GMO ( and a lot of other pseudo-science) of course if you speak/read french like me you can consult it. Sorry for the others 🙂
    I seriously hate that guy he is number 2 after wakefield.

  6. Woody
    November 29, 2013 at 1:57 AM

    My vision of what genetic modification is has changed considerably since I started visiting the sceptical, critical thinking sites.
    Before that time I saw it as ‘playing god’ and all that. But even the meaning of the words ‘sceptic’ and ‘critical thinking’ has changed a bit for me. The hosts of these sites understand how to assess a scientific test and couldn’t help but notice that this Seralini study was not good evidence. I’ve learnt so much from sites like this and the discussion that can occur in comment sections.
    In the long run I’m learning from all of you.
    Thank you all.

  7. November 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM

    That’s a very nice thing to hear. 🙂

  8. Frederick
    November 29, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Yeah i understand that couple of years ago, i was in the same situation, I saw Seralini on a TV show and i thought i was brilliant. Yeah he got me. until the best Friend friend of my wife explain to me how genetic work ( i thought i knew, but i did not, her and my wife are both Biologist, and this friend did doctorat in plant genetic, she was using potatos). I always have been a science lover, I was more into Astrophysics, space stuff and particle physic. But now Medicine and biology got my interest too.
    I started to visit JERF site last years, Now i visit JERF this site ans

    Happy that you also saw he Light side of you brain 🙂

  9. drwfishesman
    December 2, 2013 at 8:01 AM

    I had a very rude person on Google+ call me all sorts of names when I (incorrectly) thought that this paper had already been retracted. I corrected myself, but that only sent him into higher levels of rage. As a parting shot, I predicted the paper would be retracted by the end of the year. I can’t even gloat now because he’s blocked me. This person actually claimed to have worked at the National Science Foundation. I’m sure this little bit of information will only confirm his deeply held biases instead of making him do the hard work to reevaluate his world view.

  10. Chris Howard
    December 2, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    I have an acquaintance that works at NSF. He’s a secretary.

  11. Chris Howard
    December 2, 2013 at 10:31 AM

    Here’s a handy info-graphic:

    WARNING: You may become more stupider after reading.

  12. Arjen
    December 3, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    I have no opinion about the potential health risks of GMO foods, but without delving into this particular case it seems to me that there might be health risks associated with this GMO corn. It just can’t be proven with this research…

    I think there are plenty of other reasons to oppose GMO foods, the main one being that it is extremely dangerous to give corporations that much power over our food supply. Food production should be localized and done by small scale farmers if we want to keep this planet liveable in the long term. Corporate globalization should be avoided at all cost.

  13. December 3, 2013 at 7:08 PM

    Yes, the corporate thing IS a concern but it’s important to separate that concern from the fake ones about causing cancer which makes zero sense. There is no evidence that GMO food is a health risk. None. And the benefits appear to far outweigh the risks. We have to feed a huge population. Something must be done.

  14. Woody
    December 3, 2013 at 10:44 PM

    I’ve been through discussions regarding the preferred method of global food production and how it may be shaped.
    Putting aside all of the realities of transporting internationally and everything that comes with it, concentrating only on the model of food production, as idoubtit says, there are populations to feed.
    Unfortunately, studies show that organic farming will not produce enough to feed us all. There is dispute about this claim, but these disputes are about just how many billion people would starve (on top of the number that already will starve on this planet).
    One of the first projects in such a model would have to be the best information, the shown facts, exactly how much would need to be produced to feed the world in a considerate, environmentally sound and healthy way. Some extra growth would be needed because as any farmer will tell you, some seasons yield better than others – pests, plant-disease and long terms of unexpected weather can have a lot or a little effect.
    If we are to have a serious go at this kind of global programme, we have to start with the population and all of the pets or livestock that they must feed. If any kind of agricultural chemical is something that we want to minimize (or even not use at all) then yes, we will have to find something else, some other way to ensure that we produce at least enough food. Something like genetic modification would need to be looked at closely (it has been) and utilized by the makers of the model. I know the concerns people have about GMO food (there was a time that I felt those things myself), but we have numbers to feed, even if you don’t like words like that because they’re too clinical or whatever, it must be done.

  15. Arjen
    December 4, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    I agree that we have to come up with the real concerns, but I do not agree with the statement that “benefits appear to far outweigh the risks”. Putting the power in the hands of a company that has given us agent Orange, bringing organic farmers to court for “stealing” patented crops, and makes claims about solving world hunger problems that do not seem to pan out, is definitely not the way to go. Corporations work for profits, not for the benefit of mankind. We do need to feed a huge population, but there are better “low tech” solutions to do that. I have been vegan for more than 20 years and if applied on a bigger scale that would save huge amounts of resources. Even when people do not want to go become vegan, getting animal protein and fats from insects and other invertebrates is way more ecological than raising livestock.

  16. One Eyed Jack
    December 4, 2013 at 6:56 PM

    I’m glad there are vegans out there. I consider them my meat credit. In the same way that companies exchange emissions credits, every vegan out there means I can have another steak.


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