Plant Biotechnology: Transgenic Crops for the Third Millennium

  • Frank Kempken
Part of the Progress in Botany book series (BOTANY, volume 62)


During recent years, the use of plant biotechnology and genetically modified (GM) crops has increased considerably. In 1999, transgenic soybean with engineered herbicide resistance accounted for more than 50% of the soybean grown in the US. Maize and cotton carrying an endotoxin gene from Bacillus thuringensis (Bt) exhibiting insect resistance are now widely used. A rice plant that produces enough β-carotene to supplement the daily requirements of a human and serves to enhance iron uptake was recently presented. Some of the most important milestones in the development of transgenic crops are summarized in Table 1. The data given there highlight the enormous developments that have occurred during the last two decades of this last millennium. Consequently, one may conclude that the future of GM crops during the first decade of the third millennium should be bright. However, recent years have also witnessed increasing anti-GM-crop activity. This is not only true in Europe; resistance is also growing notably overseas (Lehrman 1999), making the fate of transgenic crops somewhat uncertain. In most European countries, consumer acceptance of GM-based food products is low.


Transgenic Plant Genetically Modify Male Sterility Genetically Modify Crop Transgenic Crop 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frank Kempken
    • 1
  1. 1.Lehrstuhl für Allgemeine und Molekulare BotanikRuhr-Universität BochumBochumGermany

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