A paper published recently in the Journal of Allergy & Clinical Immunology reported that a 58-year-old man in Florida who claimed to have several reactions to food products that may have contained StarLink corn was not actually allergic to the biotech product.
Although StarLink caused quite a fervor when it was found in taco shells about three years ago -- having only been approved for feed use -- there have been no proven cases of allergic reactions to the now shelved corn variety.
The paper in the journal was authored by Drs. Steven A. Sutton, Amal H. Assa'ad and Marc E. Rothenberg and registered nurse Christine Steinmetz of the d
In their study, a double blind test was performed on the Florida man, who had complained of at least three allergic reactions to corn products that contained StarLink. The man
Two years ago, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention had performed blood tests on the man -- and 27 others -- and noted that none demonstrated any
In a statement, the National Corn Growers Assn. (NCGA) said the new report reaffirms the safety of the U.S. food system and validates the credibility of the U.S. regulatory system.
"Even though this product didn't have any proven allergenicity, it was pulled from the market because of a regulatory procedure, demonstrating the extra regulatory scrutiny that biotech products come under," NCGA first vice president Leon Corzine said.
He noted the Starlink issue is a reminder of the importance of channeling. "It is important we make sure the products we produce stay in the markets where they are approved, and products are kept out of markets where they are not approved," he said. "This mistake (StarLink) cost literally millions to the American farmer. We must make sure it isn't repeated."