Defining Biotechnology

mutebabiesBiotechnology

Dec 6, 2012 (4 years and 9 months ago)

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Defining Biotechnology

Taken from Textbook: Biotechnology
Science for the New Millennium,
Ellyn Daugherty, 2007


Defining Biotechnology

Biotechnology is the study and
manipulation of living things or
their component molecules,
cells, tissues, or organs.

Techniques used in Biotechnology


Recombinant DNA (
rDNA
) technology
:
Cutting and recombining DNA molecules



Polymerase Chain Reaction
: Copying short
pieces of DNA



Cloning
: Producing identical copies

Biotechnology also uses
old practices like
fermentation and
selective breeding.

Products available because of
Biotechnology


Biotechnology is a relatively new term
-

used
since 1970s.


Human insulin
for diabetes


Proteases

for removing stains from
clothing


Antibodies

for recognizing and fighting
certain diseases


Specialty apparel (stonewashed denim jeans)

Goal of Biotechnology


To manufacture a product that is useful to
society.


Ex. A new variety of tomato


A goat that produces a human pharmaceutical


An organ, such as a human ear grown on a
mouse’s back


A molecule, such as human growth hormone.

Fields of Biotechnology

Researchers in biotechnology apply lab
techniques from the fields of biology,
chemistry, and physics.

They use mathematics and computer
skills to process and analyze data.


Biotechnology Workers and
Biotechnology Workplace

Biotechnology is practiced in several
different settings as follows:

-
companies

-
universities

-
government agencies



Contd
----------

Biotech Workers

1.
Scientific staff
like scientists, research associates,
and lab technicians who conduct basic research.

2.
Nonscientific staff
like administrators, clerical
workers, and sales and marketing reps that
support research and product development to
ensure the success of a product in the
marketplace.


Biotechnology Companies


Most biotech companies fall into one of the
following four categories based on the
products they make and sell

1.
Pharmaceutical products

2.
Agricultural products

3.
Industrial products

4.
Research or production instruments,
reagents, or data.

Some biotech companies sell their
services rather than a specific
product. E.g. Integrated Genomics,
Inc. has customers who hire them
to sequence DNA molecules.

Goal of Every Biotech Company


To produce and sell commercial
“for
-
profit” products.



This allows companies to retain
valuable employees and continue to
invest in the research and
development (R&D) of future
products.

Biotechnology Workers and the
Biotechnology Workplace
(Continued)

Taken from Textbook: Biotechnology Science for the
New Millennium, Ellyn Daugherty, 2007

University and Government Research
Labs


Not all biotechnologists work at “for
-
profit” biotech
companies.


Some biotechnologists work in university labs or at
government agencies conducting “pure science” research.


Many of the experimental techniques and scientific
methodologies used in these facilities (university labs &
government) are the same as those used at biotechnology
companies.


The major difference between these workplaces is that
companies must provide a product or a service that results
in earnings; while a nonprofit research facility does not
.


All Types of Biotech Workplaces use
the “Scientific Method”

The
Scientific Method
is a collective term for the
techniques that scientific researchers use to
provide data and gather evidence to answer
scientific questions. The following is
one

approach:


Observe
-
Observing a scientific phenomenon
increases curiosity.


Formulate a scientific question
-
The question
must be
testable
*.

“Scientific Method”
(Continued)


Develop a hypothesis
-
Predict the results of
experimentation based on past
research/experience.


Plan an experiment
-
Design a controlled
experiment with measurable data.


Conduct experiments
-
Do multiple replications
of the experiment.


Analyze data and report results
-
Analyze data
in light of expected results. Report final results
in notebooks and scientific journals.

http://www.lewis.edu/steve/science/images/SMflowchart.jpeg

Funding and Reporting Results


University and government researchers apply
for grants form industry, foundations, or the
government to pay for the research they do.


The data/results that come out of these
funded research projects are shared through
scientific journal magazines articles or at
scientific meetings.


This type of open sharing of scientific
information is made available for “the public
good.”

Example of “Public Good”


Dr. Carol
Chihara
, Professor of Biology at the University
of San Francisco; experimented for several years to
understand how organisms develop from an embryo
into an adult. They used fruit flies in their experiments
because fly development has some parallels with
human development. This research lead to new
discoveries in adult male fertility.


By publicly describing their results, this invites other
scientists from around the world to scrutinize their
work and design further experiments to find out even
more about development(other whatever topic the
scientists is studying).

Topics being Studied around the world


Universities and government labs are
currently working on:


HIV (human immunodeficiency syndrome,
AIDS)


Malaria,


Diabetes,


As well as improvement in crop yields.


Example


The Gladstone Institute at the University of California,
San Francisco
-
is an academic research facility focused
on studying
viruses

and viral therapies.


Virus
: a particle containing a protein coat and
genetic material (DNA or RNA) that is not living and
requires a host to replicate.


Scientists conducting pure or
applied science
can use
the results to further research or to provide
information for the development of new products.


Applied Science
: the practice of utilizing scientific
knowledge for practical purposes, including the
manufacture of a product.

NIH & CDC


Researchers at US government laboratories,
such as the
National Institute of Health
(NIH)
and the
Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention
(CDC), along with researchers at
many universities, use biotechnology research
techniques when looking for treatments for
major diseases, including heart disease,
cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.

More Biotechnology Applications


Forensic Scientists
-
most work in police
departments. They use biotechnology lab
procedures, such as DNA fingerprinting
(identification of a person’s unique DNA code),
when they analyze evidence from a crime
scene.


Example: The OJ Simpson trial, in which the
famous exfootball player was accused of
murdering his exwife and her companion,
demonstrated how DNA from blood cells could be
used (or, some say, misused) as evidence in a
criminal case.

DNA
Fingerprinting


This is an example of the
results of a DNA
fingerprinting procedure
(Gel Electrophoresis)


Take a look at the banding
patterns.


Can you tell which suspect
was at the crime scene?

More Biotechnology Applications
(Continued)


Ecologists
-
may use similar DNA fingerprinting
techniques to identify plant or animal breeding
partners to control parentage for protected or
endangered species.


Example: Whooping cranes are severely endangered
birds. In 2000, the total North American population of
whooping cranes was estimated at only 30! Due to
intense breeding programs in
W
isconsin and Canada,
including DNA testing of all the remaining whooping
cranes, the population had increased to almost 200
birds by 2005. results of DNA tests help scientists
determine which birds should be allowed to breed to
increase
genetic diversity*
in the population.

More Biotechnology Applications
(Continued)


Increasing
genetic diversity
*
through selective
breeding is important because it increases the
chances of the whole species survival.


Genetic Diversity*
-
Differences in the DNA
code from organism to organism.

More Biotechnology Applications
(Continued)


Wildlife biologists and custom agents identify illegally
transported or poached animals through biotechnology
techniques.


Examples: Rhinoceros horns, bear gall bladders, and exotic
birds from South Pacific, all considered “black market”
items, have been identified using DNA fingerprinting
studies similar to those used in human DNA studies.


Evolutionary biologists use molecules of organisms to
illustrate common ancestry among various organisms.


Example: After DNA and protein analysis , the red panda of
China was shown to be more closely related to the raccoon
than to the well known black
-
and
-
white panda “bear.”

4 Major Domains of Biotechnology


1) Industrial and Environmental Biotechnology


2) Medical/Pharmaceutical


3) Agricultural


4) Diagnostic/Research Biotechnology

Major Domains of Biotechnology

Industrial and Environmental
Biotechnology

Medical/Pharmaceutical


Fermented foods and
beverages


Genetically engineered
proteins for industry


DNA
identification/fingerprinting of
endangered species


Biocataysts


Biopolymers


Biosensors, bioterrorism, and
biodefense


bioremediation


Medicines from plants,
animals, fungi


Medicines from genetically
engineered cells


Monoclonal and polyclonal
antibodies


Vaccine and gene therapy


Prosthetics, artificial or
engineered organs and tissues


Designer drugs and
antibodes

Major Domains of Biotechnology

Agricultural

Diagnostic/Research
Biotechnology


Breeding of livestock and plant
crops


Aquaculture and marine
biotechnology


Horticultural products


Asexual plant propagation and
plant tissue culture


Transgenic plants an animals


Production of plant fibers


Pharmaceuticals in genetically
engineered plant crops


DNA and protein synthesis


DNA and protein sequencing,
genomics,
proteonomics


Genetic testing and screening


DNA identification and DNA
fingerprinting, forensics


Bioinformatics, microarrays


Polymerase chain reaction
(PCR)


ELISA, Western Blots, protein
identification, purification


nanotechnology


A Future in Biotech…?


The number of biotech companies is growing
dramatically.


These companies need both scientific and
nonscientific support positions, such as in
marketing, legal, financial, human resources,
public relations, computer technology, data
analysis, and transportation.


The biotech filed continues to grow at an
impressive rate with opportunities for all kinds of
employees with all kinds of interests in the
science and business of biotechnology.