Aug 7, 2017

Genetically modified salmon gets green light

RafalStachura / iStock

After a quarter century in regulatory limbo, genetically modified salmon is finally swimming migrating making its way to seafood aisles across Canada. The fish, which grows roughly twice as fast as a wild salmon, was first demonstrated in 1989, but concerns about safety kept it off the market.

In 2015, the U.S. and Canada controversially declared that the fish was safe for human consumption, but debates over labelling have stalled the U.S. roll-out.

Why it matters: Global demand for seafood is skyrocketing, and in some markets fish is a primary source of protein. Some advocates believe that GMO fish can help supply meet demand, but others worry that escaped fish (which AquaBounty notes are sterile) could contaminate wild fish stocks. GMO fish could also pave the way for other genetically modified meats, like beef and chicken.

What they did: AquaBounty, the Massachusetts-based company that created the fish, modified Atlantic salmon with a growth hormone gene from massive Chinook salmon, and a gene that regulates the production of an antifreeze protein in the ocean pout. Combined, the modified salmon constantly produces low levels of growth hormone, according to Nature.

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Pompeo tells Congress Hong Kong is no longer autonomous from China

Photo: Nicholas Kamm/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement Wednesday that he has certified to Congress that Hong Kong is no longer autonomous from China and does not warrant special treatment under U.S. law.

Why it matters: Revoking Hong Kong's special status would hasten its economic and financial decline, already set in motion by China's growing political grip on the city. The preferential status that the U.S. has long granted Hong Kong has made the city a top U.S. trading partner.

Go deeper (1 min. read)ArrowUpdated 25 mins ago - World

Podcast: Trump vs. Twitter ... vs. Trump

Twitter came under fire on Tuesday for allowing President Trump to tweet conspiracy theories about Joe Scarborough and the 2001 death of one of his staffers, despite the objections of the staffer's family. The company came under further fire from Trump himself for fact-checking two of his tweets about mail-in voting.

Dan and the New York Times' Kara Swisher dig into Trump’s use of the platform and Twitter’s steps — and missteps — in handling it.

Go deeper: Trump has turned Big Tech's speech rules into a political football

52 mins ago - Technology

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11:30 a.m. ET: 5,618,829 — Total deaths: 351,146 — Total recoveries — 2,311,404Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11:30 a.m. ET: 1,681,793 — Total deaths: 98,933 — Total recoveries: 384,902 — Total tested: 14,907,041Map.
  3. Public health: Fauci says data is "really quite evident" against hydroxychloroquine — Nearly half of Americans say someone in their household has delayed medical care.
  4. Tech: Zipline drones deliver masks to hospitals; vaccines could be next
  5. Business: Boeing to lay off 6,770 more U.S. employees.
  6. 🏒Sports: NHL unveils 24-team playoff plan to return from hiatus.
  7. What should I do? When you can be around others after contracting the coronavirus — Traveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

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Updated 56 mins ago - Politics & Policy