For the first time, the FDA has approved a genetically engineered animal as food—the AquAdvantage Salmon.
The agency said the particular genetic modification introduced into the salmon meets the definition of a drug. The fish has a growth hormone gene from a Chinook salmon and a promoter sequence from another edible fish, the ocean pout, which activates the growth hormone gene. The result is an Atlantic salmon that reaches market size much more quickly than traditional farm-raised Atlantic salmon (http://1.usa.gov/1MEDh2k).
The genetically modified salmon’s producer, AquaBounty Technologies of Maynard, Massachusetts, “met the regulatory requirements for approval, including that the food from the fish is safe to eat,” Bernadette Dunham, DVM, PhD, director of the FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine, said in a statement (http://1.usa.gov/1PChNZK).