4 episodes

From CRISPR gene-edited embryos to GMO crops, biotechnology is revolutionizing medicine and farming. Scientists are increasingly able to make targeted genetic tweaks to humans, plants and animals to combat our most urgent global challenges—including hunger, disease, aging and climate change. Sadly, scientific misinformation spreads like cancer through social media and partisan blogs. Where can you turn for trustworthy analysis of groundbreaking biotechnology innovations independent of ideological bias? Who can you trust? Join the Genetic Literacy Project and our world-renowned experts as we explore the brave new world of human genetics, biomedicine, farming and food.

Science Facts & Fallacies Cameron English

    • Science
    • 4.4 • 13 Ratings

From CRISPR gene-edited embryos to GMO crops, biotechnology is revolutionizing medicine and farming. Scientists are increasingly able to make targeted genetic tweaks to humans, plants and animals to combat our most urgent global challenges—including hunger, disease, aging and climate change. Sadly, scientific misinformation spreads like cancer through social media and partisan blogs. Where can you turn for trustworthy analysis of groundbreaking biotechnology innovations independent of ideological bias? Who can you trust? Join the Genetic Literacy Project and our world-renowned experts as we explore the brave new world of human genetics, biomedicine, farming and food.

    GLP Podcast: ‘Toxic 10’ chemicals in food; Gene editing treats heart disease? Dog-breed myths debunked

    GLP Podcast: ‘Toxic 10’ chemicals in food; Gene editing treats heart disease? Dog-breed myths debunked

    There's a "toxic 10" group of chemicals lurking in every single food you consume. Listen in to find out what you should know about these ubiquitous substances. Could gene editing reverse some cases of heart disease? Finally, can you predict a dog's behavior based on which breed it belongs to? A new study says no.







    Join geneticist Kevin Folta and GLP contributor Cameron English on episode 167 of Science Facts and Fallacies as they break down these latest news stories:





    * Scared to death: These ‘Toxic Ten’ chemicals have been widely detected in many commonly-consumed fruits and vegetables



    These 10 substances can literally kill you if you consume them in large enough quantities. They're found in every single food you eat, organic and conventional, and there's no product label that could help you avoid them in the grocery store. Each has a challenging chemical name, but all of them can be classified as—vitamins. Eaten in the reasonable amounts found in plants and animals, vitamins are of course perfectly safe and necessary for good health. Nonetheless, the toxic 10 illustrates just how misleading claims about "harmful chemicals in food" can be.









    * Understanding genetic basis for heart disease opens up opportunity for gene editing solution



    People who carry certain mutations in the PCSK9 gene are predisposed to develop very high (and potentially harmful) levels of LDL cholesterol, which can lead to heart disease. Thanks to advances in gene-editing, these patients in the coming years may have access to a one-time treatment that corrects the troublesome mutation responsible for their abnormally elevated cholesterol levels. Are we moving closer to an outright cure for heart disease?

























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    • 35 min
    GLP Podcast: GMO grapes coming soon? Golden Rice is here; FDA’s dubious animal gene-editing rules

    GLP Podcast: GMO grapes coming soon? Golden Rice is here; FDA’s dubious animal gene-editing rules

    GMO grapes exist, so why can't we buy them? Farmers in the Philippines have access to disease-fighting Golden Rice after more than two decades of delay. Why does the FDA continue to regulate gene-edited animals as if they're drugs? There isn't a bit of data to justify the agency's position.







    Join geneticist Kevin Folta and GLP contributor Cameron English on episode 167 of Science Facts and Fallacies as they break down these latest news stories:





    * Viewpoint: GMO grapes could be engineered to cut pesticide use and reduce pest damage. Why are they not yet commercialized?



    Researchers have been developing genetically engineered, disease-resistant grapes for several decades. A deep commitment to tradition in the wine industry and lingering anti-GMO fears among consumers have delayed progress. But with winegrowers facing growing pest threats, this technology may finally get a chance to prove its efficacy on the vineyard. Is there a GMO-derived wine in our future?



    * Vitamin-A enhanced Golden Rice distributed for planting for the first time in the Philippines



    Golden Rice is poised to make a serious dent in rates of vitamin A deficiency in southeast Asia, potentially saving many young children from blindness, disease and early death. Decades of dishonest activism and excessive regulatory scrutiny have kept the enhanced crop out of the developing countries that desperately need it. But, finally, farmers in the Philippines have gained access to the enhanced rice, which means it's a major step closer to helping the people who stand to benefit most from consuming it.

























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    • 47 min
    GLP Podcast: Plant-based meat ain’t so ‘green’? Science of fasting; ‘Monoculture’ myths debunked

    GLP Podcast: Plant-based meat ain’t so ‘green’? Science of fasting; ‘Monoculture’ myths debunked

    Plant-based and cell-based meats have been sold as sustainable alternatives to animal products, but are they really as good as their proponents claim? A growing body of research indicates that intermittent fasting (IF) can help some people lose weight and improve their metabolic health. Just how good is IF? Do genetically engineered crops promote monocultures? Let's debunk this popular myth for good.







    Join geneticist Kevin Folta and GLP contributor Cameron English on episode 167 of Science Facts and Fallacies as they break down these latest news stories:





    * Viewpoint: Is cell-based meat oversold as a sustainability solution?



    Is "alt-protein," meat made from plants, fungi and animal cells, a viable tool in our fight against climate change? The evidence isn't as clear as proponents of Impossible burgers and similar products say. When we consider all the data, what can we say with confidence about the benefits of alternative proteins?



    * Most humans eat three meals a day. Is that what’s best for our health?



    Many of us take for granted that eating three meals a day is optimal. As it turns out, three squares a day is more a cultural artifact than a science-based conclusion. Some people do indeed thrive when they eat frequently throughout the day, but others may do just fine on one or two meals a day. The fact of the matter seems to be this: the "right" eating habits likely differ based our genetic makeup and individual preferences.

























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    * Does crop genetic engineering promote monoculture, as anti-GMO activists claim?



    Does growing the same crop year over year jeopardize our food system? There is some validity to this concern hypothetically; however,

    • 30 min
    GLP Podcast: Vaccine denier vs skeptic; Food changes DNA? Biotech will help solve next health crisis

    GLP Podcast: Vaccine denier vs skeptic; Food changes DNA? Biotech will help solve next health crisis

    Treating vaccine-hesitant individuals like they are hardcore vaccine "deniers" could backfire as a science-outreach strategy. Can the food you eat actually change your DNA? Biotechnology gave us effective COVID-19 vaccines, and it may prove even more useful when the next global health crisis arrives.







    Join geneticist Kevin Folta and GLP contributor Cameron English on episode 166 of Science Facts and Fallacies as they break down these latest news stories:



    * Misinformation or disinformation? Deniers or skeptics? How the GMO and vaccine controversies are undermining science communication



    Are all science "deniers" created equal? According to risk expert Dr. David Zaruk, the answer is no. Many people may have doubts about the safety or efficacy of a new drug, though their uncertainty isn't motivated by the intense ideological commitments that usually drive genuine vaccine denialism. By blurring the distinctions between these two groups, science advocates risk alienating the merely vaccine hesitant and driving them into the arms of more radical anti-vaccine activists. How do we combat the ideologues while simultaneously winning the trust of open-minded consumers who have legitimate questions about vaccination?



    * Nutrigenomics: Can what you eat reprogram your genes?



    "You are what you eat," the old saying goes. But to what extent does your diet actually modify the expression of your genes? Some preliminary animal studies have offered helpful clues. We also know, for example, that exposure to toxin-producing molds in food can cause cancer, though definitive answers about how specific nutrients affect human DNA remain elusive. So when it comes to "nutrigenomics," how much of the field is good science and how much is speculation?

























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    * Why biotechnology will be critical in preparing for the next health crisis



    Biotechnology proved its value during the COVID pandemic by allowing scientists to rapidly engineer and mass produce effective vaccines. When the next global health crisis hits, and it will inevitably hit, biotech experts anticipate that AI-powered modeling will help us anticipate how a dangerous pathogen may spread,

    • 40 min

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5
13 Ratings

13 Ratings

chumbelone ,

Truth Seeker

Kevin and Cameron lay out the facts and discuss disinformation on this podcast. Myth busting through evidence, not emotion. Current episodes run a breezy thirty minutes. They’re fair and kind—if the uninformed and misinformed can sit for half an hour, progress can be made.

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