genetics research paper

burgerutterlyBiotechnology

Dec 11, 2012 (4 years and 11 months ago)

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Miranda Fariello

English 10

Mrs. St. John

8 January 2012



Genetic engineering is the act of manipulating an organism's characteristics through their
genetic material. In other words, the genes can be extracted and altered to produce new traits,
such as pr
oteins or hormones that can improve or be beneficial to humans. This gene cloning
technique was first invented in the 70's by Stanely Cohen and Herbert Boyer, and genetic
engineering was born. There is an ongoing argument of if this should be allowed in hu
mans or
not. Although this can be very beneficial, like anything there are risks that go along with it. Movies
such as
Gattaca

have introduced the idea of genetic engineering to the public, and people have
developed their own thoughts about the process. “
I
t initially sounds very sound unnatural; it
is phenomenon that is completely incompatible with Mother Nature,” an article about the
controversy of genetic engineering says.
This is a widely controversial topic. So the question
is, should genetic engineerin
g in humans be allowed?

Genetic engineering allows scientists to remove specific genes and duplicate or alter
them in order to use in the same organism or a different one. This can be done in humans. There
are two types of genetic engineering. When genes a
re added to a cell to stop illnesses, it is called
somatic modification. When genes in the early embryo are changed before a baby is born, it is
called germline modification. In other words it would be kind of like “personalizing” your child
before they we
re even born. The act of taking a piece of DNA and combining it with another is
known as recombinant DNA, or gene splicing. DNA, which stands for deoxyribonucleic acid is
made up of adenine, guanine, cytosine and thymine. Bacteria and diseases can be taken

out of
our DNA or changed to produce other hormones that could potentially get rid of illnesses. Genetic
engineers can also increase the amount of antibodies as well. They can also alter genes to
desired makeups, such as improvement in physical appearance
, intelligence and memory. While
it is possible, different people have different outlooks and opinions regarding this topic.

There are positives, negatives and risks about genetic engineering. Some people argue
that it is unnatural, immoral or unnecessary
to change the genetic codes of humans, or that it will
change the nature of human life and society. They believe that people shouldn't be treated just as
genes or DNA because they are actually human beings not just a bunch of cells that should be
altered.
“E
veryone would agree "that biology is not destiny," nor "science the only
legitimate source of knowledge about the human condition," and while "the gene is not
the disease, the disease is not the person and therefore, the person is not the gene," an
artic
le about the assumptions and risks of genetic engineering stated.

One reason people
may not believe in it it because of their own beliefs or religion. Some believe it is not fair to put
humans through this process when things could still go wrong. They bel
ieve that further and more
in depth research needs to be done before we go in and alter people's DNA and gene pools,
because a person's DNA is critical. People also fear that there is too much of a risk involved. On
the other hand, some people think this s
hould be allowed because it can cure deadly diseases.
Genetic engineering can potentially cure diseases such as Huntington's disease, ALS (Lou
Gehrig's disease), and cystic fibrosis. While people think it should be allowed in order to correct
genetic disor
ders, some think that's where it should stop. It should not be allowed in order to
change someones appearance or personality and make them into a somewhat “new” person. If
that began, it would risk the individuality and diversity of human beings. If the st
udies of genetic
engineering are allowed to be continued, scientists could one day find a way to eliminate
diseases that are trying to be cured right now, such as Alzheimer's, HIV/AIDS and cancer. An
enormous amount of money and lives could be saved in the

future if this is used to correct and
cure fatal illnesses. However on the other hand, while genetic engineers are trying to stop or
correct one defect, they could be unintentionally causing another to happen. For these reasons
genetic engineering is a co
ntroversial topic.

Genetic Engineering has the potential to change our lives for the better. It could be the
answer to the extensive studies of how to cure some of the major diseases our society faces
today. We have the knowledge and technology to make it

happen. However, some people are still
opposed to the idea of unnaturally changing someone's genetic makeup for various reasons.
There are countless advantages and disadvantages that have to do with genetic engineering.


Sources:

"Assumptions and Risks of

Genetic Engineering."
infotrac.galegroup
. N.p., n.d.
Web. 10 Jan. 2012.


<
http://find.galegroup.com>
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"Genetic Engineering at a Historic Crossroads."

Sierra Club
. N.p., n.d. Web. 10

Jan. 201
2. <
http://www.sierraclub.org/biotech/report.asp>
;.


"Genetic Engineering."

Medical Discoveries
. N.p., 2012. Web. 10 Jan. 2012.

<
http://www.discoveriesinmedicine.com/Enz
-
Ho/Genetic
-
Engineering.html#b>
;.


"Genetic Engineering: Why so controversial?"

serendip
. N.p., 2012. Web. 10
Jan.




2012. <
http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/4935>
;