It consists of the techniques used to manipulate genetic material in order to change an organism´s traits.
STAGES OF GENE MANIPULATION
- The gene that requires manipulation is located. Its sequence of nucleotides must be known to be able to do this.
- The gene is isolated: Enzymes are used to cut DNA in specific places.
- The gene is attached to a DNA molecule from a bacterium or a virus in order to trasport it.
- The recominant DNA is inserted into a cell so that it can be expresed and synthesise the corresponding protein.
- The 2 trsnds of DNA that need to be copied are separated.
- Each complementary strand is synthesised. A DNA polymerase enzyme is used to do this.
- The strands of the newly formed double helix are separated.
- These steps are repeated several times intil there are many copies of the original DNA.
USES OF GENETIC ENGINEERING
- Biological reseach: used to research diseases, genes are inserted into animal cells.
- Police investigations and forensic medicine: victims or suspects can be identified by their DNA
- Paternity tests: it can be determinated and investigated using DNA samples.
- Historical and archaeological studies: DNA of human remains can give information about the person belonged to.
IMPLICATIONS OF GENETIC ENGINEERING
- There is the risk that modified organisme, particulary bacteria and viruses, coud spread from the laboratories and reach human beings.
- The techniques hat are used coned create serious ethical dilemmas because some of them affect human life. Ex: the posibility of interfering with the traits of offspring for reasons other than the prevention os genetic diseases.