MON 87705

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MON 87705 are a variety of Genetically Engineered High Oleic Acid Roundup Ready Soybeans created by Monsanto. They were deregulated in the U.S. on December 16, 2011. They have been genetically engineered to have higher levels of oleic acid (omega 9 fatty acid), and lower levels of linoleic acid (omega 6 fatty acid) and saturated fats (palmitic and stearic acid). MON 87705 is marketed under the brand name "Visitive Gold Soybeans"[1]

Altered Oil Profile

A typical soybean's fat content breaks down as follows:[2]

The MON 87705 soybean's oil profile is altered to be as follows:[3]

Technical Details

According to Monsanto's petition to the USDA to deregulate MON 87705:[4]

"Using the extensive information known regarding the fatty acid biosynthetic pathway in soybean, MON 87705 was developed to selectively down-regulate, in seed, two key enzymes involved in fatty acid biosynthesis. As a result, MON 87705 soybean oil is lower in saturated fats (6% vs. 15% of total fatty acids) and higher in monounsaturated 18:1 oleic acid (76% vs. 23% FA), with an associated decrease in the polyunsaturated 18:2 linoleic acid levels (10% vs. 53% FA) relative to commodity soybean. Consequently, MON 87705 soybean oil, with improved oxidative stability and lower saturated fats than currently available commodity soybean oil, is suitable for a range of food and industrial applications. In addition, soybean meal derived from MON 87705, which contains very low residual oil, is unchanged in composition relative to commodity soybean meal. MON 87705 also contains the 5-enolpyruvylshikimate-3-phosphate synthase gene derived from Agrobacterium sp. strain CP4 (cp4 epsps) encoding the CP4 EPSPS protein that is expressed throughout the plant conferring tolerance to glyphosate, the active ingredient in the Roundup® family of agricultural herbicides.
"The improved fatty acid profile in MON 87705 soybean oil is achieved through the use of endogenous soybean (Glycine max L.) gene segments configured to suppress FATB and FAD2 gene expression. MON 87705 contains FATB1-A and FAD2-1A gene segments under the control of a seed promoter, limiting oil composition modification to this tissue. The assembled gene transcript has an inverted repeat that produces double stranded RNA (dsRNA) that, via the RNA interference (RNAi) pathway, suppresses endogenous FATB and FAD2 gene expression, thereby producing the desired fatty acid phenotype...
"Acyl-acyl carrier protein (ACP) thioesterases (referred to herein as FATB enzymes) are localized in plastids and hydrolyze saturated fatty acids from the ACP-fatty acid moiety. The suppression of FATB results in a decrease in the transport of the saturated fats out of the plastid, thus retaining their availability for desaturation to 18:1 oleic acid... Therefore, suppression of FATB decreases saturated fat content in the oil as well as increasing oleic acid. Subsequently, this increased amount of oleic acid is either delivered to the oil body or endoplasmic reticulum for further desaturation. Delta-12 desaturases (referred to as FAD2 enzymes) desaturate 18:1 oleic acid to 18:2 linoleic acid. The suppression of FAD2 in soybean seed causes reduced desaturation of oleic to linoleic acid thus contributing further to the increase in oleic while reducing linoleic acid content in the oil. Therefore, the overall result of the suppression of these two enzymes is a reduction in saturated 16:0 palmitic and 18:0 stearic fatty acids, an increase in monounsaturated 18:1 oleic acid, and lower levels of polyunsaturated 18:2 linoleic acid relative to commodity soybean."

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