September 2012, Volume 28, Issue 3, pp 325-335,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 19 Nov 2011
Does insect netting affect the containment of airborne pollen from (GM-) plants in greenhouses?
Greenhouses are a well-accepted containment strategy to grow and study genetically modified plants (GM) before release into the environment. Various containment levels are requested by national regulations to minimize GM pollen escape. We tested the amount of pollen escaping from a standard greenhouse, which can be used for EU containment classes 1 and 2. More specifically, we investigated the hypothesis whether pollen escape could be minimized by insect-proof netting in front of the roof windows, since the turbulent airflow around the mesh wiring could avoid pollen from escaping. We studied the pollen flow out of greenhouses with and without insect netting of two non-transgenic crops, Ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum) and Corn (Zea Mays). Pollen flow was assessed with Rotorod® pollen samplers positioned inside and outside the greenhouse’ roof windows. A significant proportion of airborne pollen inside the greenhouse leaves through roof windows. Moreover, the lighter pollen of Lolium escaped more readily than the heavier pollen of Maize. In contrast to our expectations, we did not identify any reduction in pollen flow with insect netting in front of open windows, even under induced airflow conditions. We conclude that insect netting, often present by default in greenhouses, is not effective in preventing pollen escape from greenhouses of wind-pollinated plants for containment classes 1 or 2. Further research would be needed to investigate whether other alternative strategies, including biotic ones, are more effective.
Aylor, D. E. (2005). Quantifying Maize pollen movement in a Maize canopy. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 131, 247–256.CrossRef
Aylor, D. E., Boehm, M. T., & Shields, E. J. (2006). Quantifying aerial concentrations of Maize pollen in the atmospheric surface layer using remote-piloted airplanes and Lagrangian stochastic modeling. Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 45, 1003–1015.CrossRef
Bartzanas, T., Boulard, T., & Kittas, C. (2004). Effect of vent arrangement on windward ventilation of a tunnel greenhouse. Biosystems Engineering, 88, 479–490.CrossRef
Benton Franklin Health District. (2009). How to take a pollen count. http://www.bfhd.wa.gov/lab/how.php. Accessed 03 Jan 2011.
Beug, H. J. (2004). Leitfaden der Pollenbestimmung für Mitteleuropa und angrenzende Gebiete. München, Germany: Verlag D. Friedrich Pfeil.
BGGO. (2008). Regeling GGO (GMOs regulations). http://www.BGGO.rivm.nl. Accessed 03 Jan 2011.
Chapman, M. A., & Burke, J. M. (2006). Letting the gene out of the bottle: The population genetics of genetically modified crops. New Phytologist, 170, 429–443.CrossRef
COGEM (Dutch advisory committee for the use of Genetically Modified Organisms). (2007). Annual Report 2007. The Netherlands: COGEM.
Craig, W., Tepfer, M., Degrassi, G., & Ripandelli, D. (2008). An overview of general features of risk assessments of genetically modified crops. Euphytica, 164, 853–880.CrossRef
Critten, D. L., & Bailey, B. J. (2002). A review of greenhouse engineering developments during the 1990s. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 112, 1–22.CrossRef
Davidson, J. (2010). GM plants: Science, politics and EC regulations. Plant Science, 178, 94–98.CrossRef
Dayan, J., Dayan, E., Strassberg, Y., & Presnov, E. (2004). Simulation and control of ventilation rates in greenhouses. Mathematics and Computers in Simulation, 6, 3–17.CrossRef
DeVos, Y., Reheul, D., & De Schrijver, A. (2005). The co-existence between transgenic and non-transgenic maize in the European Union: A focus on pollen flow and cross-fertilization. Environmental Biosafety Research, 4, 71–87.CrossRef
Ellstrand, N. C. (2003). Dangerous liaisons? When cultivated plants mate with their wild relatives. Baltimore, Maryland: John Hopkins University Press.
Ellstrand, N. C. (2011). Over a decade of crop transgenes out-of-place. In C. Wozniak & A. McHughen (Eds.), Regulation of agricultural biotechnology. New York: Springer, in press.
European Commission. (2009). Directive 2009/41/EC on the contained use of genetically modified micro-organisms. Official Journal of the European Union, L125, 75–97.
European Commission. (2011). Commission regulation 619/2011, laying down the methods of sampling and analysis for the official control of feed as regards presence of genetically modified material for which an authorization procedure is pending or the authorization of which has expired. Official Journal of the European Union, L166, 9–15.
Frenz, D. A. (2000). The effect of wind speed on pollen and spore counts collected with the Rotorod Sampler and Burkard spore trap. Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, 85, 392–394.CrossRef
Gressel, J. (2010). Gene flow of transgenic seed-expressed traits: Biosafety considerations. Plant Science, 179, 630–634.CrossRef
Heffer, M. J., Ratz, J. D., Miller, J. D., & Day, J. H. (2005). Comparison of the Rotorod to other air samplers for the determination of Ambrosia artemisiifolia pollen concentrations conducted in the Environmental Exposure Unit. Aerobiologia, 21, 233–239.CrossRef
Hooftman, D. A. P., & den Nijs, J. C. M. (2007). A test of the Crosspoll model: suggestions for further development; containing a first estimation of numbers of expected hybrids for Beta and Brassica in The Netherlands. Report of the Dutch advisory committee for the use of Genetically Modified Organisms, CGM-2007-001.
Hooftman, D. A. P., Flavell, A. J., Jansen, J., den Nijs, J. C. M., Syed, N. H., Sorensen, A. P., Orozco-Ter Wengel, P., & van de Wiel, C. C. M. (2011). Locus dependent selection in crop-wild hybrids of Lettuce under field conditions and its implications for GM-crop development. Evolutionary Applications, 4, 648–659.
Hooftman, D. A. P., Oostermeijer, J. G. B., Marquard, E., & den Nijs, J. C. M. (2008). Modelling the consequences of crop-wild relative gene flow: A sensitivity analysis of the effects of outcrossing rates and hybrid vigour breakdown in Lactuca. Journal of Applied Ecology, 45, 1094–1103.CrossRef
Hugg, T., & Rantio-Lehtimäki, A. (2007). Indoor and outdoor concentrations in private and public spaces during the Betula pollen season. Aerobiologia, 23, 119–129.CrossRef
Hugg, T., Valtonen, A., & Rantio-Lehtimäki, A. (2007). Pollen concentrations inside private cars during the Poaceae and Artemisia spp. pollen season: A case study. Grana, 46, 110–117.CrossRef
Katsoulas, N., Bartzanas, T., Boulard, T., Mermier, M., & Kittas, C. (2006). Effects of vent openings and insect screens on greenhouse ventilation. Biosystems Engineering, 93, 427–436.CrossRef
Kittas, C., & Bartzanas, T. (2007). Greenhouse microclimate and dehumidification effectiveness under different ventilator configurations. Building and Environment, 42, 3774–3784.CrossRef
Kittas, C., Katsoulas, N., Bartzanas, T., Mermier, M., & Boulard, T. (2008). The impact of insect screens and ventilation openings on the greenhouse microclimate. Transactions of the ASABE, 51, 2151–2165.
Kuparinnen, A., Shurr, F., Tackenberg, O., & O’Hara, R. (2007). Air-mediated pollen flow from genetically modified and conventional crops. Ecological Applications, 17, 431–440.CrossRef
Kwit, C., Moon, H. S., Warwick, S. I., & Stewart, C. N. (2011). Transgene introgression in crop relatives: Molecular evidence and mitigation strategies. Trends in Biotechnology, 29, 284–293.CrossRef
Latorre, F., Romero, E. J., & Mancini, M. V. (2008). Comparative study of different methods for capturing pollen, and effects of vegetation and meteorological variables. Aerobiologia, 24, 107–120.CrossRef
Majdoubi, H., Boulard, T., Hanafi, A., Bekkaoui, A., Fatnassi, H., Demrati, H., et al. (2007). Natural ventilation performance of a large greenhouse equipped with insect screens. Transactions of the ASABE, 50, 641–650.
Multidata LCC. (2002). Rotorod sampler: Operating instructions. Plymouth Meeting, PA: Multidata LCC.
Pilson, D., & Prendeville, H. R. (2004). Ecological effects of transgenic crops and the escape of transgenes into wild populations. Annual Reviews of Ecology, Evolution and Systematics, 35, 149–174.CrossRef
Shilo, E., Teitel, M., Mahrer, Y., & Boulard, T. (2004). Air-flow patterns and heat fluxes in roof-ventilated multi-span greenhouse with insect proof netting. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 122, 3–20.CrossRef
Sparrow, P. A. C. (2010). GM risk assessment. Molecular Biotechnology, 3, 267–275.CrossRef
Spijkerboer, H. P., Beniers, J. E., Jaspers, D., Schouten, H. J., Goudriaan, J., Rabbinge, R., et al. (2002). Ability of the Gaussian plume model to predict and describe spore dispersal over a potato crop. Ecological Modelling, 155, 1–18.CrossRef
Teitel, M. (2007). The effects of screened openings on greenhouse microclimate. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 143, 159–175.CrossRef
Traynor-Dann, P. L., & Irwin, A. R. (2001). A practical guide to containment greenhouse research with transgenic plants and microbes. Blacksburg, VA: Information Systems for Biotechnology.
UNEP (United Nations Environmental Program). (2004). Cartagena protocol on biosafety to the convention on biological diversity, 23–27 February 2004. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Van de Wiel, C. C. M. (2007). Outcrossing frequency in selfing and apomictic plant species subject to containment measures in GMO development regulation. Report of the Dutch advisory committee for the use of Genetically Modified Organisms, CGM-2007-006.
Van Hout, R., Chamecki, M., Brush, G., Katz, J., & Parlange, M. B. (2008). The influence of local meteorological conditions on the circadian rhythm of corn (Zea mays L.) pollen emission. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 148, 1078–1092.CrossRef
Waschmann, R. S., Watrud, L. S., Reece, L. R., & Shiroyama, T. (2010). Sunlit mecocosms designed for pollen confinement and risk assessment of transgenic crops. Aerobiologia, 26, 311–325.CrossRef
Watanabe, S., Kamada, H., & Ezura, H. (2006a). Efficacy of a special screened greenhouse covered by fine mesh on Maize outcrossing. Plant Biotechnology, 23, 309–316.CrossRef
Watanabe, S., Sano, T., Kamada, H., & Ezura, H. (2006b). Effect of a special screened greenhouse covered by duplex fine mesh in reducing Maize outcrossing. Plant Biotechnology, 23, 387–394.CrossRef
Watanabe, S., Sano, T., Kamada, H., & Ezura, H. (2006c). Reducing gene flow from pollen dispersal of genetically modified plants in special screened greenhouses. Plant Biotechnology, 23, 129–135.CrossRef
- Does insect netting affect the containment of airborne pollen from (GM-) plants in greenhouses?
- Open Access
- Available under Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Volume 28, Issue 3 , pp 325-335
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer Netherlands
- Additional Links
- Genetically modified plants
- Pollen escape
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics, University of Amsterdam, Science Park 904, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
- 2. NERC-Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Wallingford, UK