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You've heard a lot about aspartame by now, the synthetic sweetener found in many diet soft drinks, thousands of foods and supplements. Indeed, its cancer-causing potential was recently discussed in the GreenMedInfo article: Aspartame: Putting the Die into Dieting since 1981. But when you realize that aspartame is produced from the excreta of GM bacteria (E. Coli) ... it makes an already controversial product seem much less healthy. The original patent is now available for the public to read online. It states that genetically cloned modified E. Coli are cultivated in tanks and fed so that they can excrete the proteins that contain the aspartic acid-phenylalanine amino acid segment used to make aspartame. These 'fecal' proteins are then treated with highly toxic methanol (wood alcohol) to produce the artificial sweetener.
"Process for producing aspartame. European Patent Application EP0036258
The artificial sweetener aspartame, a dipeptide with the formula Asp-Phe-me, is produced using a cloned micrcorganism. A DNA which codes for a large stable peptide comprised of the repeating amino acid sequence (Asp-Phe)n is inserted into a cloning vehicle which in turn is introduced into a suitable host microorganism. The host microorganism is cultured and the large peptide containing the repeating Asp-Phe sequence is harvested therefrom. The free carboxyl group of the large peptide is benzylated and then hydrolysed to benzyl Asp-Phe dipeptides. This dipeptide is methylated and then debenzylated to form aspartame."
Using the metabolic waste products ('fecal' matter) of bacteria without telling the public is a bit disgusting, really, when you think about it. According to a 1999 article published in The Independent, titled "Worlds top sweetener is made with GM bacteria,' this sweetener was a byproduct of a 'secret' genetic engineering process swept under the human safety rug.
The genetic engineering of foods has been around for a while it seems. Searle, the original maker of aspartame, kept its production methods a secret, insisting that their product was 'safe'. Despite an article published in 1975 by the Washington Post, (May 14th, Marian Burros) called: "Aspartame Sweetener and Liver Damage". At that time, the manufacturer was G.D. Searle and it was known from the beginning that aspartame causes liver damage. Since then, there have been a growing body of studies that have demonstrated that aspartame is a highly toxic chemical affecting the brain, optic nerve, immune and central nervous system, cancer, and damage to the liver.
Historically aspartame was never proven safe (where are the studies?), yet was marketed through the political skills of Donald Rumsfeld, who happened to work for Searle, before Monsanto got involved with aspartame. Study after study looked at the damaging effects of aspartame especially from accumulative ingestion. In 2007, Dr. Morando Soffritti proved that a low dosage of aspartame causes cancer. Later in an article published in 2010 in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine, it was concluded that aspartame induces cancers of the liver and lungs...in male Swiss mice.