Genetic Engineering



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Genetic Engineering



GENETIC ENGINEERING. Today, scientists can deliberately remove genes from one organism and add them to the genetic material of another organism. This process, known as genetic engineering, alters (changes) the DNA of a cell. The changed DNA is called recombinant DNA. The cell that receives the recombinant DNA receives new traits, such as the ability to prevent a certain disease. Genetic engineering has greatly increased our ability to treat genetically related disorders. For example, the biochemical insulin has been synthetically manufactured for the treatment of diabetes. In addition, cancer scientist have already used genetic engineering techniques to show the genetic link to certain types of cancer. By removing small sections of particular genes, they have been able to pinpoint the location of genes that have the potential to cause cancer. Cancer-causing genes are known as oncogenes. With continued research into the use of recombinant DNA, scientists hope to cure other conditions caused by genetic defects and to develop plants and animals with desirable traits. Genetic engineering, along with other types of biological research, generates knowledge used to design ways of diagnosing, preventing, treating, controlling, or curing plant and animal diseases. There is, however, concern that genetic engineering may lead to the reproduction of new forms of life potentially dangerous to humans and other organisms.

Review Questions

  1. What is genetic engineering?

Genetic engineering is

  1. DNA which has been changed by genetic engineering is called __________________________.



  1. Explain how genetic engineering has helped humans and state an example.



  1. What is an oncogene?

Adapted from United Publishing Co., Inc.


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