genetically modified organisms

Genetically modified organisms By: Rakhi Agarwal

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Page 1: Genetically modified organisms

Genetically modified organisms

By:Rakhi Agarwal

Page 2: Genetically modified organisms

WHAT IS GENE• Genes are made of DNA.• If DNA is like an information library, genes

are like individual instruction books.• The instructions in genes allow them to make

proteins – which are the building bocks of life.

• Make up the structural parts of the organism

Page 3: Genetically modified organisms

???• Genetic modification (GM), genetic manipulation (GM) and

genetic engineering (GE) all refer to the same thing – the use of modern biotechnology techniques to change the genes of an organism, such as a plant or animal.

• Organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.

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.• GM does not necessarily mean that a gene

from another organism has to be used to create the GMO. GM can mean that the organism’s own genes are changed.

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.• GM breeding is used because it can change the genes of an organism in ways not possible through traditional breeding techniques providing opportunities for new plant varieties and animal breeds.

• Biotechnology companies are largely engineering GMO crops to resist direct application of herbicide. This allows the crop plants to live while surrounding weeds die.

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Transgenic plants

• They are plants used in agriculture, the DNA of which has been modified using genetic engineering techniques.

• Have been engineered for scientific research, to create new colours in plants, and to create different crops.

• In research, plants are engineered to help discover the functions of certain genes.

• One way to do this is to knock out the gene of interest and see what phenotype develops.

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• Creating plants better resistant to weeds, pest and other diseases

• Bigger yields to create more efficient use of land, less uses of herbicides and other pesticides.

• Foods with better texture, flavor and nutritional value.

• Foods with a longer shelf life for easier shipping.• Finally, GM foods can create an essential

sustainable way to feed the world.

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Examples...• Bt cotton• Bt brinjal• Bt tomato• Golden rice• GM Maize• Corn• Soybean

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Corn :• According to the Environmental Protection

Agency, U.S. farmers produced over 70 million acres of corn in 2000, netting about $15 billion in sales.

• According to the CFS, up to 40 percent of U.S. corn is genetically modified. A bacteria gene is inserted that targets pests, increasing food supplies.

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Soybeans :

• Most genetically modified crop in the U.S.• About 2.8 billion bushels of soybeans were

harvested from over 72 million acres of cropland in 2000.

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Transgenic animals

• One that carries a foreign gene that has been deliberately inserted into its genome.

• The foreign gene is constructed using recombinant DNA methodology.

• It is a slow, tedious, and expensive process. • New technologies are making genetic modifications

easier and more precise.• The first transgenic (genetically modified) animal was

produced by injecting DNA into mouse embryos then implanting the embryos in female mice.

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Examples...• Mice• Sheep• Cow• Pig• Fish

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USES...• GMOs are used in biological and medical research.• Production of pharmaceutical drugs, experimental medicine

(e.g. gene therapy).• Agriculture (e.g. golden rice, resistance to herbicides).• For example, a gene from a jellyfish, encoding a

fluorescent protein called GFP, can be physically linked and thus co-expressed with mammalian genes to identify the location of the protein encoded by the GFP-tagged gene in the mammalian cell.

• Such methods are useful tools for biologists in many areas of research.

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Agriculture• Plant crops, including both food and fiber harvests, have

been subject to several types of genetic modification. • Genes used to increase yields include those conveying

drought, pest and disease-resistance. • According to the GMO Compass website, in 2009 more

than 88 percent of U.S.-produced corn, soybean and cotton crops were genetically modified.

• GMO animals are also frequently seen in agriculture. Genes for increased milk and egg production, disease-resistance and higher meat proportions are among those introduced into these populations.

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• It is the idea of breeding crops to increase their nutritional value.

• Can be done through genetic engineering. • Biofortification differs from ordinary

fortification because it focuses on making plant foods more nutritious as the plants are growing, rather than having nutrients added to the foods when they are being processed.

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Are GMOs labelled?

• They should always be labelled.• Unfortunately, even though polls consistently

show that a significant majority of Americans want to know if the food they’re purchasing contains GMOs, the powerful biotech lobby has succeeded in keeping this information from the public.

• In the absence of mandatory labelling, the Non-GMO Project was created to give consumers the informed choice they deserve.

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Positive Environmental Impacts of GMO's:

• Soil salinity has become a major problem in all agriculture especially in the San Joaquin Valley. This has made crops less able to grow and in some cases unable to grow at all.

• Thus we need to research the possibility of using the genes of salt tolerant plants species (eg: mangrove) in our agricultural crops.

• Example of such crop: A gene from the grey mangrove, Avicennia marina, has

been genetically implanted into a tobacco plant, making it able to tolerate salt stress as well as showing tolerance to other ionic stresses.

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Medicine• According to the Institute for Traditional Medicine,

one of the first applications of genetic modification was the creation a bacterial strain capable of producing human insulin.

• Insulin, the hormone lacking in people with diabetes, was previously isolated from pig pancreas.

• Recombinant insulin offers many advantages over pig insulin, including cost savings, fewer allergic reactions and putting an end to the practice of euthanizing pigs for their insulin.

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Gene therapy• Genetic modification of humans, or so-called gene therapy,

is becoming a treatment option for diseases ranging from rare metabolic disorders to cancer.

• Coupling stem cell technology with recombinant DNA methods may someday allow stem cells derived from a patient to be modified in the laboratory to introduce a desired gene.

• For example, a normal beta-globin gene may be introduced into the DNA of bone marrow-derived hematopoietic stem cells from a patient with sickle cell anaemia, and introduction of these GM cells into the patient

could cure the disease without the need for a matched donor.

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GMO – Playing against nature?????

• Is it ethical?• Playing with creations of God?• GEAC- Genetically Engineering Approval

Committee• Is food derived from GMOs unsafe?

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Socio-political relevance of GMOs• Genetic manipulation may potentially alter the allergenic

properties of crops. • However, the more-established risk involves the potential spread

of engineered crop genes to native flora and the possible evolution of insecticide-resistant “superbugs.”

• In 1998 the European Union (EU) addressed such concerns by implementing strict GMO labelling laws and a moratorium on the growth and import of GM crops.

• In addition, the stance of the EU on GM crops has led to trade disputes with the United States, which, by comparison, has accepted GM foods very openly.

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Conclusion• Genetically-modified foods have the potential to solve many of

the world's hunger and malnutrition problems. • Help protect and preserve the environment by increasing yield

and reducing reliance upon chemical pesticides and herbicides.• Many challenges ahead for governments, especially in the areas of

safety testing, regulation, international policy and food labelling.• Many people feel that genetic engineering is the inevitable wave

of the future and that we cannot afford to ignore a technology that has such enormous potential benefits.

• We must proceed with caution to avoid causing unintended harm to human health and the environment as a result of our enthusiasm for this powerful technology.

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References :•All data has been collected

from “The times of India” and “Wikipedia”.

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