Financial conflicts of interest were found in 40 percent of published research articles on the genetically modified crops, also known as GMO crops, French researchers said this week.
The findings in the December 15 edition of the US journal PLOS ONE focused on hundreds of research articles published in international scientific journals.
“We found that ties between researchers and the GM crop industry were common, with 40 percent of the articles considered displaying conflicts of interest,” said the study.
Researchers also found that studies that had a conflict of interest were far more likely to be favorable to GM crop companies than studies that were free of financial interference.
The study focused on articles about the efficacy and durability of crops that are modified to be pest resistant with a toxin called Bacillus thuringiensis.
Thomas Guillemaud, director of research at France’s National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA), told AFP that the team originally looked at 672 studies before narrowing down to the pool to 579 that showed clearly whether there was or was not a financial conflict of interest.