During the 40th Annual Meeting of The Toxicology Forum, the current and potential future science, regulations, and politics of agricultural biotechnology were presented and discussed. The meeting session described herein focused on the technology of RNA interference (RNAi) in agriculture. The general process by which RNAi works, currently registered RNAi-based plant traits, example RNAi-based traits in development, potential use of double stranded RNA (dsRNA) as topically applied pesticide active ingredients, research related to the safety of RNAi, biological barriers to ingested dsRNA, recent regulatory RNAi science reviews, and regulatory considerations related to the use of RNAi in agriculture were discussed. Participants generally agreed that the current regulatory framework is robust and appropriate for evaluating the safety of RNAi employed in agricultural biotechnology and were also supportive of the use of RNAi to develop improved crop traits. However, as with any emerging technology, the potential range of future products, potential future regulatory frameworks, and public acceptance of the technology will continue to evolve. As such, continuing dialogue was encouraged to promote education of consumers and science-based regulations.
- Toxicology Forum
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