AMES, Iowa -- An Iowa State professor has been appointed to the 15-member science advisory panel that will help the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency determine whether StarLink corn should be approved for human consumption. Charles Hurburgh, professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering and manager of Iowa State's Grain Quality Laboratory, will meet with 14 other scientists to analyze new data submitted by Aventis CropScience, the company that developed the genetically modified corn.
Hurburgh's area of expertise is grain handling and processing. The panel also includes a toxicologist, allergist, pediatrician, food safety scientist, agricultural economist, plant scientist, environmental health scientist and pesticide specialist.
StarLink was genetically modified to be resistant to certain insects. EPA approved the corn only for animal feed and industrial applications because of a potential for allergic reactions in some people. This fall, the corn was found in the nation's food supply. Aventis has asked EPA to grant a temporary permit for the corn's use in food.
The science advisory panel will meet in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 27 and will hold a public hearing on Nov. 28. The panel will present its recommendation to EPA by Dec. 1.
Charles Hurburgh, Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, (515) 294-8629
Teddi Barron, News Service, (515) 294-477