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• gene flow and its possible consequences
• non-target species and biodiversity impacts
• resistance risk assessment and management
• transgene expression and locus structure
• problem formulation and options assessment
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Teaching Tools: Gene flow and its consequences


Once transgenes are released into the environment, there is the potential for gene flow to crop or wild populations of related plant species. This section explores the factors that influence the likelihood of gene flow and the potential environmental consequences of transgene movement.

Course content for Gene Flow and its Consequences

Purpose: This course will teach participants to understand potential environmental risks associated with gene flow and to identify the kinds of information they need to assess these risks. They will use this understanding to evaluate the quality of available information, assess the risks associated with gene flow of a GM crop, and consider measures that might be used to manage these risks for case study GM crops.

During the course, participants will:

    • Get an overview of potential adverse effects stemming from transgene flow, and who might be affected

    • Identify potential recipient populations

    • Learn a procedure for rapid qualitative evaluation of exposure of recipient populations to transgene flow

    • Analyze the important informational gaps in the rapid exposure and assessments, and prioritize these informational needs

    • Understand data needs to assess hybridization rates

    • Understand how recurrent release, fitness and spatial scale determine the probability and rate of spread of a transgene into a recipient population

    • Conduct qualitative and quantitative assessments of adverse effects resulting from gene flow to recipient population

    • Learn about the data needs and experimental methods for assessing socio-economic adverse effects associated with transgenic flow

    • Understand the adverse effects associated with genetic assimilation and demographic swamping of recipient populations

    • Learn the possibilities and present limitations for risk management of the consequences of gene flow

    • Evaluate the purposes of monitoring of gene flow, and connect monitoring methods to possible remedial actions



Further Information

Read more in the project books!


'Moco' cotton in Brazil: a possible recipient of gene flow


cotton volunteer along a road in Brazil: bridging populations


species of Malvaceae


Gossypium barbadense bolls