Tomato Line 5345

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Tomato Line 5345 is a variety of Bt tomato made by Monsanto. It is genetically engineered to produce an insecticidal protein like the one naturally produced by the bacteria species Bacillus thuringiensis. It was deregulated in the U.S. in 1998. Bt crops and genetically modified organisms are controversial around the world.

U.S. Deregulation

On October 14, 1997, Monsanto submitted a petition to the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service for the deregulation of its Bt tomato line 5345. On November 28, 1997 APHIS published a notice in the Federal Register announcing that the Monsanto petition was available for public review and soliciting public comments, due on or before January 27, 1998. The USDA conducted an environmental assessment (EA) under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and issued a "finding of no significant impact" (FONSI). MON 87701 was deregulated on March 26, 1998

Upon deregulation, APHIs wrote in the Federal Register:

"Tomato line 5345 has been genetically engineered to express a Cry1A(c) insect control protein derived from the common soil bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. kurstaki HD-73 (Btk). The subject tomato line also expresses the nptII gene, which codes for the enzyme neomycin phosphotransferase (NPTII) and has been used as a selectable marker in the development of transgenic tomato plants. While tomato line 5345 contains the aad gene, tests indicate that the AAD protein is not expressed in the subject tomato plants. Expression of the added genes is controlled in part by noncoding DNA sequences derived from the plant pathogens Agrobacterium tumefaciens and cauliflower mosaic virus. The Agrobacterium transformation method was used to transfer the added genes into the UC82B parental tomato plants."[1]

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  1. Federal Register, Vol 63, No 68, April 9, 1998.

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