Genetically Modified Microorganisms

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Genetically Modified Microorganisms

John A. Doe

Strayer University- Morrow Campus

Genetically Modified Microorganisms

Genetically modified microorganisms or also known as genetically modified organisms are organisms whose genome has been engineered in the laboratory in order to favor the expression of desired physiological traits or the production of desired biological products. Otherwise known for as in lames terms as an organism whose genetic material has been modified or altered, especially through genetic engineering techniques. Organisms that have been genetically modified include microorganisms such as fish, insects, yeast, plants, and animals. Genetically modified organisms are widely used in scientific research which helps produce goods and foods, known also as genetically modified foods (Starr/Evers/Starr, 2013).

Genetically modified organisms or genetically modified microorganisms are engineered through science by the process known as genetic engineering. Genetic engineering is the manipulation of genes, implying that the process is outside the organism’s reproductive process. This is done by the genetic engineering of splicing genes together. Splicing genes together is done by the researchers of a certain area of study employing genetic engineering to take certain genes from a source organism and put them into another plant or animal. An example of genetic engineering is when a scientist takes a Bacillus Thuringiensis organism, a commonly occurring soil bacteria, and use enzymes to remove from it the Bt gene. The Bt gene produces a protein that turns toxic in the digestive tract of caterpillars. The Bt gene is then spliced and then incorporated into the chromosome organism of a cotton or corn plant. The end result is a plant with a natural pesticide that kills any caterpillar that decides to feed upon these genetically modified and genetically engineered plants (Starr/Evers/Starr, 2013).

Another section of genetic engineering is gene transfer. Gene transfer is done when a scientist is transferring of genes between species and amino acid sequences of polypeptides are then changed because genetic code is then universal. Gene transfer is done by removing the plasmid from the bacterium and the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is cut by a restriction enzyme. Next the foreign deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is then cut with the same enzyme and then the foreign deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is now inserted into the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) of the plasmid which is now known as a combined plasmid. The combined plasmid is then reinserted into the bacterium. The bacterium is used to insert the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) carrying the foreign gene into the chromosome of a cell or protein. The cells or the protein are then grown in a lab in a culture, which could be anything such as a test tube or a petri dish for a period of time. Now the plant or protein is generated from a cell clone. Now all of the cells carry the foreign gene and may express it as a new trait. Within the study of science gene transfer is mainly used to help cure viruses, inherited diseases, cancer, and infectious diseases such as AIDS (Eliash1988, 2007).

Another section within genetic engineering having to deal with genetically modified organisms and genetically modified microorganisms is known as cloning. Cloning is the creation of an organism that is an exact genetic copy of another. This means that every single bit of DNA is the same between the two. The first well known subject and successful cloning was known as Dolly the sheep in 1997, but cloning technology has been around way longer than dolly. Cloning is also known as the process of nuclear transplantation or the transplantation of a nucleus of one organism. To make Dolly, researchers isolated a somatic cell from an adult female sheep. Next, they transferred the nucleus, an enclosed compartment that contains all the information that...
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