Genetically Modified Organisms By: Alex Bondar
Genetically Modified Organisms GMO- A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using techniques in genetics generally known as recombinant DNA technology.
History Prehistoric times to 1900 Some naturalists and farmers begin to recognize "hybrids, " plants produced through natural breeding between related varieties of plants. 1900 European plant scientists begin using Gregor Mendel's genetic theory to manipulate and improve plant species. 1953 James Watson and Francis Crick publish their discovery of the three-dimensional double helix structure of DNA
History 1973 Herbert Boyer and Stanley Cohen combine their research to create the first successful recombinant DNA organism. 1980 The U. S. Supreme Court rules that genetically altered life forms can be patented. 1987 The first field tests of genetically engineered crops (tobacco and tomato) are conducted in the United States.
History 1992 The FDA declares that genetically engineered foods are "not inherently dangerous" and do not require special regulation. 1994 The European Union's first genetically engineered crop, tobacco, is approved in France. 2000 International Biosafety Protocol is approved by 130 countries at the Convention on Biological Diversity
GMO Today Mostly in agricultural sector Popular in North America and South America Only Bt Maize in Europe but popularity of GM products is growing China recently started growing GM rice
GMO Today Genetically Conferred Trait 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Herbicide tolerance Insect resistance Altered fatty acid composition Virus resistance Vitamin enrichment Faster mutation Examples 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Soybean Corn Canola Plum Rice Coho Salmon
Technology Used Bacterial Carriers: Using viruses or bacteria to "infect" animal or plant cells with the new DNA. Biolistics: Coating DNA onto tiny metal pellets, and firing it with a special gun into the cells. Microinjection: Injecting the new DNA into fertilized eggs with a very fine needle. Electoporation: Using electric shocks to create holes in the membrane covering sperm, and then forcing the new DNA into the sperm through these holes.
Bacterial Carriers • • • The bacterium is prepared in a special solution to make its cell walls more porous. The selected gene is inserted into a bacterium extra chromosomal DNA molecule (called a plasmid) and dropped into the solution. The solution is heated, which allows the plasmid to enter the bacterium and express the new gene. The genetically altered bacterium (or recombinant) is allowed to recover (is ‘rested’) and grow and, depending on the plasmid, make extra copies of the new gene. The bacterium is then allowed to infect the target plant cells so it can deliver the plasmid and the new gene into the cells to be transformed.
Biolistics The selected DNA is attached to microscopic particles of gold or the metal tungsten. Like firing a gun, these DNA-laden particles are shot into the target cells using a burst of gas under pressure.
Microinjection The selected DNA is injected into a fertilized ovum (female egg cell) through an extremely slender device called a glass capillary tube. The genetically modified egg is then transplanted into the prepared uterus of a receptive female and allowed to grow to term. This method ensures that almost every cell in the developing organism’s body contains the new DNA but not all the offspring will carry the transgene (is deemed a ‘transgenic’ animal).
Electoporation The prepared target cells are immersed in a special solution with the selected DNA. A short but intense electric shock is then passed through the solution. The result is small pores/tears in the cell walls, which allow the new genetic material access to the nuclei. Then, the cells are placed into another solution and encouraged to repair their breached walls, locking the ‘donor’ DNA inside the cell. The selected DNA is incorporated into the host chromosomes to provide the host with a new gene.
Advantages & Disadvantages Genetically Modified Organism’s (GMO’s) are plants or crops that are modified in a laboratory to increase certain traits. There are natural methods of increasing these traits, however, genetic modification makes it that it can be done quickly and precisely. Science supports GMO’s because of the several benefits that it offers to mankind.
Advantages of GMO’s Some Pest benefits of GMO’s Include Resistance Tolerance to Herbicide Resistance to Disease and Cold Drought Resistance Enhanced Nutritional Content
Pest Resistance Each growing season a large amount of a crop is lost due to pests. This results in a financial loss for the farmer, and less of the product for the consumer. To fix this farmers use pesticides, but these are expensive and not good for the consumer of the product. By genetically modifying crops we can increase pest resistance without the use of chemicals.
Tolerance to Herbicide By genetically modifying crops we can make them tolerant to one specific herbicide. Farmers use multiple kinds right now to kill different weeds and plants that end up growing with their crops and these are very expensive. By modifying the crops we can save the farmer money so they only have to buy one type of herbicide, and it will mean less chemicals on our food.
Resistance to Disease and Cold Crops are constantly infected by fungal and bacterial diseases, and there is also unexpected frost and cold. These can result in destroyed seedlings, or even completely destroyed crops. Plants can be protected from these by being genetically modified.
Tolerance to Drought Each year droughts can take out an entire crop, and there is nothing that can be done because farmers cannot predict the weather. By modifying plants we can make it that they are more tolerant to drought and more likely to survive the harsh conditions.
Enhanced Nutritional Content This is considered the greatest advantage of genetically modifying crops. By enhancing the nutritional value of a crop, we can ensure that even in countries where lesser crops are available for consumption, the people can still obtain the required nutrition, which prevents malnourishment.
Disadvantages of GMO’s Some disadvantages include: Potential Human Health Impacts Potential Environmental Impacts Access and Intellectual Property
Potential Human Health Impacts Allergens Transfer of Antibiotic Resistance Markers Unknown Effects
Potential Environmental Impacts Unintended transfer of transgenes through cross-pollination Unknown effects on other organisms
Access and Intellectual Property Domination of world food production by a few companies Increasing dependence on industrialized nations by developing countries Foreign exploitation of natural resources
Controversies on Genetically Modified Organisms Four main Controversies are: 1) Concerns including the possibility that GMO’s insect or herbicide resistant traits will spread to other, less desirable, plant varieties. 2) GMOs are also argued to pose unknown risks to human health, such as the transfer of allergens or carcinogens.
3) GMO may cause antibiotic resistance. 4) GMO’s are unlabeled in the U. S. A. The biggest issue is that genetically modified organisms have not been proven in any way to be safe, and most of the studies are actually leaning the other direction, which is why many of the world’s countries have banned these items whose DNA has been genetically engineered. VIDEO: http: //www. youtube. com/watch? v=hg. Q 4 wnfi. Nbc
Works Cited http: //www. betterhealth. vic. gov. au/bhcv 2/bhcarticles. nsf/page s/Genetically_modified_foods_techniques http: //responsibletechnology. org/gmo-basics/the-ge-process http: //www. nature. com/scitable/topicpage/genetically-modified -organisms-gmos-transgenic-crops-and-732 http: //www. gmocompass. org/eng/agri_biotechnology/gmo_planting/191. gm_ maize_110000_hectares_under_cultivation. html http: //americanradioworks. publicradio. org/features/gmos_indi a/history. html http: //www. genetics-gsa. org/pages/pp_benefits. shtml http: //benefitof. net/benefits-of-genetically-modified-organisms/ http: //www. ecologyandsociety. org/vol 4/iss 1/art 13/