Position on genetically modified animals approved

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Following a recommendation submitted by the Council on Research, the Executive Board approved a Position Statement on the Creation and Use of Genetically Modified Animals. The council believes the statement will help provide the guidance necessary to facilitate informed discussions on future uses of genetically modified animals.

"We would be well-served by having something on our books addressing this issue," said AVMA President Bonnie V. Beaver during the board's discussion.

According to the council, the creation and use of genetically modified animals has become an emerging topic of public interest. In response, the council developed a draft position statement and, in June 2004, submitted the statement for review to the Animal Agriculture Liaison Committee, Animal Welfare Committee, Aquatic Veterinary Medicine Committee, Committee on Environmental Issues, Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents, and Council on Public Health and Regulatory Veterinary Medicine.

After reviewing the draft position, members of the AALC and CPHRVM commented that they did not believe the proposed position statement added substantially to the current AVMA Position Statement on Biotechnology. The council disagreed and reported that the statement on biotechnology does not specifically address genetically modified animals. Instead, the statement focuses on the use of biotechnology to ensure and enhance production of a safe food supply.

To obtain a copy of the position statement, log on to the AVMA Web site and click here