What is genetic engineering? It’s the ability to recreate or alternate and organism in a duplicative form in a lab. Where is genetic engineering headed? Are we hoping to one day be able to engineer body parts as they slowly start to break down or people getting overly obsessive about having the possibility to change themselves completely to look like a specific person or better yet their favorite celebrity? I think that genetic engineering comes in handy when utilized appropriately such as creating new cells or tissue when trying to cure a specific disease. It’s when people take advantage of the engineering mechanisms to create a clone of themselves. I mean look how far cosmetic surgery has come along and how some get carried away with wanting to change themselves. One of the most widespread but also most controversial uses of genetic engineering is in the creation of genetically modified crops and food. The goal of genetic modification can vary from crop to crop.
One example is the Soybeans that have been modified with a DNA segment bringing resistance to herbicides sprayed over fields to kill weeds growing. When you read and hear about how animals are being modified and injected with all sorts of hormones in order to increase the production of milk. Or how farmers fatten up their cattle. The artificial process that they put the cows through is to boost the amount of meat they can sell, which means more money for the farmers and their business. Another good thing that genetic engineering has allowed is the ability to develop faster, cheaper, diagnostic tests for certain diseases to be used both in the laboratory and in the body. These tests are used to identify infectious diseases, hormonal changes, pregnancies, cancer, and other diseases and conditions. Also, the use of genetically modified organisms to produce human hormones, enzymes, vaccines, and medications has revolutionized the pharmaceutical industry.
One thing I can relate to this is the fact that I’m lactose intolerant and now I’m able to buy pills that will allow me to enjoy products that I wasn’t able to before. Another great thing about genetic engineering is how it’s made it possible to develop gene therapy. Genetic diseases are inherited conditions that occur because of one or more genetic changes or mutations that prevent the correct functioning of a particular gene. Most genetic diseases do not have a treatment or cure. But this is where you can look at the bright side of genetic engineering techniques is that scientists hope that they will be able to transform an affected individual’s mutated gene into a working gene by replacing it with a functional copy of the gene. Gene therapy has shown some success in helping individuals with severe combined immunodeficiency, hemophilia type B, and several other genetic diseases, and even has been put to use on cancer.
It’s crazy to even think that birth defects could potentially be eliminated if doctors were able to change that child’s genes even before they are born. Maybe even be able to cure dis The process could also be adapted to cure hereditary diseases and prevent them from passing to future generations. Genetic engineering has definitely come a long ways and I’m curious to see how much more we could achieve with it.
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