Genetically Modified Organisms
- The genes of GMOs have been manipulated using genetic engineering.
- Genetics is a newer science that is still being experimented with.
- GE can and is used to create different combinations of plants, animals and bacteria.
- These combinations cannot be created naturally; only in labs.
- All commercial GMOs are tested and proven to be safe.
So many GMOs...
- Some of the promises for GMOs are increased yield, more nutrition and a few other benefits.
- GMOs are blamed for a lot of different problems.
- Other nations do not consider GMOs safe.
- The US is not among them as majority of the food we eat and know are genetically modified.
- US residents are “taking a stand” against GMOs.
- This is silly considering how many GMOs they eat; if they win, they are in for a big change.
- Most people want GMOs to be labeled and, as of currently, they are not.
- Most people would be shocked at how many of their foods are GMOs.
- In the US 80% of the food we eat are GMOs.
Taking a Stand
- Their is a non-GMO project, that is trying to let people have “an informed choice” so they know if they are eating GMOs or not.
- They also argue that GMOs are not good for the environment or people's health.
- 80% of all GMOs are herbicide and pesticide proof.
- Use of pesticide and the like have increased since GMOs were proofed.
- This results in more harmful chemicals being released into the environment.
- This will be a problem until they find an insect repelling and safe gene.
How GMOs are Made
- GE involves mutation, addition and deletion of genes.
- The genes are usually from a different species.
- In nature this can occur if a DNA strand penetrates another cell's membrane.
- It's very unlikely to happen, but it exists.
- This is how most GMOs are created.
- This is also how some viruses work.
- Some ways scientists make GMOs include:
- Attaching the genes to a virus,
- Inserting the DNA into the nucleus of the soon to be GMO with a very small syringe,
- Electroporation which is introducing one type of DNA from one organism into the cell of another with an electric pulse,
- Firing very small particles with a gene gun. It was originally designed for plant transformation. The “Bullet” is an elemental particle made of heavy metal that is coated with the DNA that is to be transferred.
- Other forms of GE take advantage of natural forms of gene transfer.
- Like the ability of Agrobacterium to transfer genes to plant cells and Lentiviruses to transfer genes to animal cells.
- Agrobacterium was created as a tool for GE but Lentiviruses are a type of viruses that are used in GE, but not created for it.
- HIV is an example of a Lentivirus.
First GMOs/Good GMOs
- The first organisms to become GMOs were bacteria.
- The main reason is because they are easily modified.
- Synthetic biology is distinctly linked with bacteria.
- The bacteria are now used for creating pure human proteins
- These proteins are used for many medicines.
- GM bacteria are used to create a protein called insulin. Insulin is used to make medicines that treat diabetes.
- Other similar bacteria have been used to create bio-fuels, Clotting factors to treat hemophilia, and make human growth hormones to treat some forms of dwarfism.
- Some genetically modified bacteria is used to make foods.
- An example would be Amylase, which changes starch into simple sugars.