Symposium on the Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms (ISBGMO)
has been held biennially since 1990. This meeting
has afforded the opportunity for stakeholders with diverse perspectives,
interests, and areas of expertise to share information and exchange
ideas on matters concerning the biosafety of GMOs. The Symposium
series is designed for academicians, policy makers, regulators, NGOs,
and industry representatives interested in recent scientific research
The 8th Symposium will be held September 26-30 2004 in Montpellier,
France, under the responsibility of the International
Society for Biosafety Research (ISBR).
The theme of this year’s symposium is: “How Scientific
Research Informs Biosafety Decisions”, and features a special
workshop to discuss North-South issues related to biosafety of GMOs.
As in previous symposia, the meeting will focus on scientific findings
that are relevant to regulatory decision-making worldwide. The symposium
is intended to foster an open exchange of ideas and information that
facilitates outreach between scientists with biosafety research experience
and parties interested in developing effective regulatory or biosafety
programs. Six plenary sessions will address recent scientific research
related to assessing the environmental benefits and risks of GMOs,
while two plenary sessions will focus on issues related to regulatory
policy and society. (Plenary talks are by invitation.) A poster session
will include a wide range of scientific presentations, and all plenary
and poster abstracts will be published in the 8th Symposium Proceedings.
The 8th Symposium will include three novel elements:
A special North-South workshop. Here the purpose will be to help
the GMO biosafety research community to identify the GMO-related
biosafety research that countries
in the South will need in order to develop GMOs for their own uses, and
to create better contacts between researchers in North and
session: “How to conduct an environmental risk assessment”.
This will be a practical, “how-to” session on environmental risk
assessment focused primarily on assessing field trial applications as a means
to building the information necessary to evaluate commercialization requests.
The session will be lead by two internationally recognized experts in the regulation
and scientific assessment of GMOs.
A special event
for better contact between scientists and the public, in the form
of a public presentation of the results of the symposium, and a