November 29, 2011 | Technical Evaluation Report | USDA National Organic Program |
“..In recent decades, advancements in immunology, biotechnology, and many other fields have lead to the development of vaccines produced using genetic engineering technology. Genetic engineering of vaccines includes the process of deleting, adding, or otherwise genetically modifying the viral or bacterial organism used for vaccination. These vaccines include live genetically modified vaccines containing live, weakened strains of the disease; genetically modified inactivated or “killed” vaccines; and DNA vaccines (containing “naked” DNA). As will be discussed in later sections of this report (see Evaluation Questions #4 and #11,and Additional Questions #5, #6, and #7), genetic engineering has been applied to vaccine development to improve upon traditional vaccines in a variety of specific ways. In particular, traditional vaccines have been developed to improve their ability to be tracked in vaccinated animals, reduce viral shedding from animals, increase efficacy against specific diseases, and increase stability during storage and transport.
Composition of the Substance: GMO vaccines are composed of inactivated or weakened viral or bacterial organisms that have had genetic material added, deleted, or otherwise modified. Vaccines may also contain suspending fluids, adjuvants (additives that help stimulate an immune response, most commonly aluminum salts and oil/water mixtures), stabilizers, preservatives, or other substances to improve shelf-life and effectiveness of the vaccine (CDC, 2011).
Additives in GMO vaccines do not differ from conventional vaccines (OIE, 2010).”