Lecture 38 GenEng Part1 notes

Lecture 38 GenEng Part1 notes - Lecture 38 Genetic...

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Lecture 38 Genetic Engineering, Part 1 6 th Ed. pages 375-380; 383-385; also section on agricultural applications - equivalent to 406-407 in 7 th ed. 7 th Ed. pages 384-389; 392-394; 406-407 Introduction . Genetic engineering is the manipulation of genes for desired results. Instead of learning how biological systems work (as we’ve done up until now in the course), we’ll now see how we can use this information for our own purposes. Other names referring to this branch of biology are recombinant DNA technology, molecular biology, and gene cloning. Gene cloning is the production of many copies of a desired gene. We’ll discuss 3 practical applications of genetic engineering. One is to make useful products. These include improved crops and livestock, and also purified proteins, such as insulin for diabetics. This is easier, cleaner, and cheaper than purifying these proteins by conventional means. Another application of genetic engineering is in research. The information we are gaining about the function of the proteins in our bodies comes from genetic engineering. In addition to basic understanding of biology, research can lead to important medical applications, including new drugs and gene therapy for genetic diseases. Most of these potential applications have not yet been realized. These are a challenge for the next generation of biologists! Finally, cloning genes (especially by PCR, as we'll see in the next lecture) is useful in forensics. Small amounts of tissue left by a criminal at a crime scene can be used to identify the criminal. Genetic engineering depends on bacteria . Instead of having to invent tools for genetic engineering from scratch, we take advantage of several features of bacteria that have been perfected by billions of years of evolution. Bacteria are ideal for this purpose, as they are fast-growing and cheap. We can easily get bacteria to make many copies of any gene or other DNA fragment that we want. There are 2 types of uses for these genes. First, we can isolate these genes for further analysis. For instance, if we discover a new oncogene in a person, we may want to know what the mutation is that makes it an oncogene. We need many identical copies of the gene to determine its sequence and identify the mutation. Alternatively, we can have the bacteria express the gene and make the protein. An example is insulin, which people with one kind of diabetes must take daily. Instead of having to isolate insulin from animal tissue (as was the case before genetic engineering), we can express the human insulin gene in bacteria, have bacteria make the protein, and then purify it. In the next few paragraphs, we’ll use production of human insulin by bacteria as an example to illustrate the steps required to get bacteria to produce a desired foreign protein. Making recombinant insulin: the first steps
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Lecture 38 GenEng Part1 notes - Lecture 38 Genetic...

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