Cultivation of genetically modified maize line 59122

Advisory reports | 07.02.2008 | 080207-02

This notification concerns the cultivation of the genetically modified maize line 59122. The maize line harbors the genes cry34Ab1, cry35Ab1 and a pat gene conferring tolerance to glufosinate-ammonium-containing herbicides and resistance to certain Coleopteran insects such as the corn rootworm (Diabrotica spp.).
In Europe, no wild relatives of maize are present and establishment of maize plants in the wild has never been observed. There are no reasons to assume that the inserted traits will increase the potential of the maize line to establish feral populations. In addition, the appearance of volunteers is very rare under Northwest European agronomical conditions.
Previously, COGEM advised negatively on the cultivation of maize line 59122.  Based on the studies on non-target organisms provided, COGEM had some serious reservations on the conclusion of the applicant that maize line 59122 exerts no negative effects on non-target organisms. The applicant was asked to provide more detailed and confirmatory data to underpin his conclusion.
The applicant provided additional information regarding the statistical relevance of existing laboratory studies, representativeness of the selected NTO test species for the European situation and the methodology used for NTO testing with maize 59122. Furthermore, data from two additional field tests were provided.
Based on the additional information provided by the applicant and the considerations put forward in this advice, COGEM is of the opinion that the cultivation of maize line 59122 poses a negligible risk to human health and the environment, under the condition that specific monitoring for Ladybird beetles is incorporated.

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