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alarmduckBiotechnology

Dec 12, 2012 (4 years and 11 days ago)

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Yanique Bell









Period 9/10

March 31, 2010








Current Event #7

DNA Daredevils



The first genetic engineers were
Stanley Cohen from
Stanford University and Herbert
Boyer from the University of California in San Francisco. They were the first to
place the genes
for antibiotic resistance into E.coli bacteria. Although, these pioneers probably had no idea what
they had begun, they started a g
reat advance
ment

in technology and science. Currently, genetic
engineering is used for many purposes. For
example, botanists, plant specialists, genetically
modify crops so that they are harder and have a better nutritional value. In contrast, geneticists
use genetic engineering differently. They use it to uncover the jo
bs of individual genes by

add
ing, dele
ting, or modifying

genes. For example, when scientists add an extra copy of a gene
it increases their activity
and their role in the organism becomes easily visible. Deleting the gene
also helps to identify its role by seeing what happens in its absence.

In addition, modifying the
gene helps scientists see what the DNA sequence for a certain function in a gene is. Lastly,
mapping
a gene is used to uncover what a gene and its protein does. These methods are used in
many different ways. For instance, if

scientists discovered

which gene predisposes humans to
breast cancer and which could protect against it, they could create new antibiotics that target

these genes. Surely
, genetic engineering has become very helpful.


Furthermore, in my opinion I think t
his
article is very well organized, comprehendible
,
and interesting.
After learning about genetic engineering in class,
I read this article

and it really
helped me to further understand
. The diagram was

especially helpful
. In addition, Cohen and
Boyer c
ompleted their experiment in 1973 which was not very long ago. Then, they only knew
how to mak
e bacteria antibiotic resistant
, but today scientists
have experimented with the DNA
of many organisms, such as mammals, birds, and insects. Scientists have seq
uenced the full
genomes of many organisms, including humans,
but the functions of all these genes are still
unknown. I think it is really exciting how scientists are using genetic engineering to uncover the
roles of many of these genes. Plus, if they fig
ure out which genes are responsible or can protect
against different types of cancers and other illnesses
then they could find
the cures for these life
-
threatening illnesses. I can just imagine how many lives could be saved in the future.
Therefore,
I ho
pe

scientists will be able to uncover more using genetic engineering.