European Corn Borer Resistant Corn

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European Corn Borer Resistant Corn is genetically engineered Bt corn. It has been genetically engineered to produce an insecticidal protein that is naturally made by a bacteria called Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), in every cell of the plant. The Bt protein the corn produces kills lepidopteran insects, including the European corn borer. However, by 2011, pests evolved resistance to Bt.[1]




  • January 18: U.S. deregulates Northrup King's glufosinate tolerant Bt11 Corn, engineered to produce a cry1Ab protein
  • Syngenta commercializes the Bt11 corn, branding it "Agrisure CB."[2]
  • March 15: U.S. deregulates Monsanto's MON 809 and MON 810, engineered to produce a Cry1Ab protein
  • December 18: EU approves Ciba-Geigy's GE corn as either a seed or a food and promises to draft proposals requiring genetically modified foods to be labeled. The approved corn "has been altered to resist the corn borer pest and the herbicide glufosinate, and contains a marker gene that is resistant to ampicillin. It has already been approved in the US, and is used in around 0.5% of the nation's corn-growing area."[3]





  • Dow/Pioneer Commercializes TC1507, branding it "Herculex I."[6]


  • Monsanto Commercializes "YieldGard Plus" corn, which combines two different Bt corn products (European corn borer resistance via MON 810 and Corn Rootworm resistance via MON 863) in one seed[7]
  • October 20: Deregulation of Mycogen/Dow's glufosinate tolerant Bt Corn TC6275


  • Monsanto introduced "YieldGard Plus with Roundup Ready Corn 2," a corn seed with three different genetically engineered traits ("triple stacked"), including a Bt trait that kills European corn borers (MON 810), a second Bt trait to kill corn rootworms (MON 863), and the ability to withstand being sprayed with glyphosate herbicide.[8]


  • Monsanto and Dow sign an agreement to cross-license intellectual property, making the way for future GMOs with traits from both companies together in the same seed.[9]


  • July 24: U.S. deregulates Monsanto's MON 89034, which produces cry1A.105 and cry2Ab2 proteins.


  • Monsanto launches "Genuity" brand. Genuity products with European Corn Borer resistance traits include Genuity™ VT Double PRO™, Genuity® VT-Triple Pro™, and Genuity™ SmartStax™, which all contain the MON 89034 trait.
  • Due to a cross-licensing agreement with Monsanto, Dow also releases a SmartStax™ seed with the trait MON 89034.
  • April 20: U.S. deregulates of Syngenta's Bt corn line MIR162, which produces a VIP3Aa20 protein.


  • Monsanto begins selling seeds for genetically engineered sweet corn to U.S. farmers.[10] Branded as "Seminis Performance Series Sweet Corn," the seeds contain the MON 89034 and MON88017 traits.[11]

Commercialized Products

Several different varieties of European Corn Borer Resistant corn are sold. They include:


Dow AgroSciences and Pioneer Hi-Bred:[14]

Pioneer Hi-Bred (DuPont):[15]

  • Optimum® AcreMax® Insect Protection system (YieldGard Corn Borer, TC1507, and NK603)
  • Optimum® AcreMax® Xtra Insect Protection (YieldGard Corn Borer, TC1507, DAS59122-7, and NK603)


  • Agrisure® CB/LL (Bt11)
  • Agrisure Viptera 3110 (MIR162 and Bt11)
  • Agrisure Viptera 3111 (MIR162 and Bt11)
  • Agrisure GT/CB/LL (Bt11)
  • Agrisure® CB/LL/RW (Bt11)
  • Agrisure® 3000GT (Bt11)

Different Bt Genes Used

The bacteria species Bacillus thurigiensis has many different subspecies, and each produces different proteins that are toxic to different types of insects. The first several varieties of European corn borer resistant corn (Ciba Seeds Event 176 Corn, Monsanto's MON 80100, MON 809, MON 810, and MON 802, Northrup King's Bt11 Corn, and DeKalb Genetics Corporation's DBT418) all used genes and proteins from the subspecies Bacillus thurigiensis kurstaki (Btk).

AgrEvo's variety CBH-351 uses a genes from a different subspecies, Bacillus thurigiensis tolworthi (Bt tolworthi). And Mycogen, Dow Agrosciences, and Pioneer Hi-Bred's varieties (Lines 1507 and 6275) both use genes from Bacillus thurigiensis aizawi (Bt aizawi).

Articles and resources

Related SourceWatch articles


  1. Clay Dillow, "Pests Are Developing Resistance to Monsanto's Engineered Supercorn," Popular Science, August 30, 2011, Accessed September 1, 2011.
  2. Organic Center Presentation.
  3. "EU Clears Ciba-Geigy's Genetically Altered Corn Zea Mays L," World Food Chemical News, Pg. 3 Vol. 3 No. 18 ISSN: 1073-2357, December 25, 1996.
  4. Monsanto History, Accessed August 10, 2012.
  5. Wensman Seed, Accessed August 11, 2012.
  6. The Organic Center Presentation].
  7. Monsanto Company History, Accessed August 12, 2012.
  8. Monsanto Company History, Accessed August 10, 2012.
  9. Monsanto Company History, Accessed August 10, 2012.
  10. Monsanto empire hungry for sweet corn, Pesticide Action Network, August 9, 2011.
  11. Product Safety Summaries Stacked Products, Monsanto, Accessed August 11, 2012.
  12. Product Safety Summaries Stacked Products, Monsanto, Accessed August 11, 2012.
  13. Know Before You Grow, National Corn Growers Association, Accessed August 10, 2012.
  14. Know Before You Grow, National Corn Growers Association, Accessed August 10, 2012.
  15. Optimum AcreMax, Accessed August 14, 2012.
  16. Know Before You Grow, National Corn Growers Association, Accessed August 10, 2012.

External resources

External articles