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Record information and status
Record ID
Date of creation
2012-05-29 21:46 UTC (jack.heinemann@canterbury.ac.nz)
Date of last update
2012-06-01 20:38 UTC (jack.heinemann@canterbury.ac.nz)
Date of publication
2012-07-31 16:15 UTC (dina.abdelhakim@cbd.int)

General Information
Molecular profiling - a tool for addressing emerging gaps in the comparative risk assessment of GMOs
Heinemann, J.A.; Kurenbach, B.; Quist, D.
Author’s contact information
School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
Organization(s) involved in the publication of this resource
Centre for Integrated Research in Biosafety (INBI)
School of Biological Sciences
University of Canterbury
Private Bag 4800

New Zealand, 8140
Phone:+64 3 364 2500
Fax:+64 3 364 2590
Url:Centre for Integrated Research in Biosafety (INBI)
  • English
Publication date
Summary, abstract or table of contents
Assessing the risks of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is required by both international agreement
and domestic legislation. Many view the use of the "omics" tools for profiling classes of molecules as useful in
risk assessment, but no consensus has formed on the need or value of these techniques for assessing the risks
of all GMOs. In this and many other cases, experts support case-by-case use of molecular profiling techniques
for risk assessment.
We review the latest research on the applicability and usefulness of molecular profiling techniques for GMO
risk assessment. As more and more kinds of GMOs and traits are developed, broader use of molecular profiling
in a risk assessment may be required to supplement the comparative approach to risk assessment. The
literature-based discussions on the use of profiling appear to have settled on two findings: 1. profiling
techniques are reliable and relevant, at least no less so than other techniques used in risk assessment; and 2.
although not required routinely, regulators should be aware of when they are needed. The dismissal of routine
molecular profiling may be confusing to regulators who then lack guidance on when molecular profiling
might be worthwhile. Molecular profiling is an important way to increase confidence in risk assessments if the
profiles are properly designed to address relevant risks and are applied at the correct stage of the assessment.
Thematic areas
  • Biosafety policy and regulation
  • LMO use and transboundary movement
    • LMOs for use as food or feed or for processing
    • LMOs for introduction into the environment (Environmental releases)
    • LMOs for pharmaceuticals
Background material to the “Guidance on risk assessment of living modified organisms”
Is this document is recommend as background material for the “Guidance on Risk Assessment of Living Modified Organisms”
Section(s) of the “Guidance on Risk Assessment of Living Modified Organisms” this background material is relevant
Additional Information
Type of resource
  • Article (journal / magazine / newspaper)
Publisher and its location
Copyright © 2011, Elsevier
Environment International Volume 37, Issue 7, October 2011, Pages 1285-1293
Keywords and any other relevant information
Keywords: Genomics; Transcriptomics; Proteomics; Metabolomics; Epigenomics; Genetically modified organisms; Risk assessment
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