What is Biotechnology

messengerrushBiotechnology

Feb 22, 2013 (4 years and 8 months ago)

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What is

Biotechnology?

Biotechnology


Break it down to the root words and what do you get?


“The use of living organisms to solve problems or
make useful products.”

Electron microscope

photograph

of yeast cells

Biotechnology


We have been using Biotechnology for
thousands of years.


The ability of microorganisms to produce acids
and gasses as a result of normal cell metabolism
has been taken advantage of to make new and
exciting foods for generations.


Can you think of some examples of such
products?

Biotechnology


Bread



Cheese





Beer and Wine


Biotechnology


For years humans have been
also been manipulating the
genetic makeup of organisms
to make more useful
products.


For example: Peas, Corn,
Domesticated farm animals
(Cows, sheep, etc.)

The Biotechnology Revolution


So why are we talking
about a Biotechnology
revolution? Why are you
in this class? What’s so
New?


Our knowledge of cell and
molecular biology has
reached a point where we
can manipulate organisms
at the molecular level.


“New”

Biotechnology


There are now several thousand
companies that have been born to
take advantage of the new
techniques and knowledge available
to biologists to create products
that are useful to human society.


A collection of

Technologies & Skills


Biotechnology uses
a collection of
scientific skills
mixed with Sales,
Marketing, Legal,
Regulatory, and
Human Resource
skills

Biotechnology research
Disciplines


Biochemistry


Cell Biology


Molecular Biology


Microbiology


Genetics


Immunology


Engineering


Materials science


Computer science


Mathematics

Biotechnology Applications


Medical


Diagnostic


Therapeutics


Vaccines


Environmental


Environmental monitoring


Bioremediation


Pollution prevention


Agriculture


Crop yield


Animal Health


Food Quality


Genetic Engineering


Isolation of genes with a specific (useful)
function.


Insertion of that gene into an organism that
will transcribe and translate that product.


Expression of the gene at high volume to
make a product


E.g. Insulin

The core of this class will focus on the
biology and tools of genetic engineering

Bioinformatics


Is the use and organization of
information about biology.


A fusion of Computer science,
mathematics, and molecular
biology.


Whole genomes can be
sequenced in days.


Massive amounts of data
available e.g. at:
(
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/)


Comparisons of sequences


Analysis of Protein structures


Correlation of marker sequences
with disease or reaction to drugs.

Interesting Links


DNA Chip Technology
http://www.sumanasinc.com/webcontent/animations/content/dnachip
s.html



Glow
-
pig:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Y1d2
-
ObxPQ



Heart of stem
-
cells:
http://www1.umn.edu/umnnews/Feature_Stories/Researchers_creat
e_a_new_heart_in_the_lab.html


(video)

http://www.startribune.com/video/13711842.html



Super
-
carrot:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7188969.stm


Curing deafness:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7582640.stm



Artificial life:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7203186.stm