Methods of genome modification are intimately linked to the history of mankind, from the early beginnings of agriculture in the Neolithic period to the development of gene therapies throughout the 20th century. Today, the techniques used are derived from biotechnologies (transgenesis, mutagenesis, and new genome editing techniques known as NBT, for new breeding techniques) and have sparked a societal debate riddled with mistrust or ideological rejection.

Are these fears founded? At the very least, the scientific advances and opportunities offered by these biotechnologies warrant our consideration, especially in the health sector. Today, globalisation means that health, whether human, animal, plant or environmental, is interdependent and can be referred to collectively under the concept of One Health, One World.

In this study, we examine the current and future regulatory issues concerning genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and genome edited organisms (GEOs), as well as the geopolitical impact in certain countries resulting from the mistrust triggered by the emergence of these biotechnologies.

This study was written by Catherine Regnault-Roger, Emeritus University Professor at the University of Pau and Pays de l’Adour (Iprem –e2s UPPA), member of the French Academy of Agriculture, corresponding member of the National Academy of Pharmacy, member of the Scientific Committee of the High Council for Biotechnology.