Genes by Design-An Introduction to Food Biotechnology

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Biotechnology
An Introduction to the World!
by
John Rist & Irene Benson
Viborg High School
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Introduction
Enduring Understanding
 Biotechnology and its applications can be
used to solve world problems.
Essential Questions
 What are the current uses and purposes for
biotechnology in animal science?
 What bio-ethical issues are facing the world
as a result of biotechnology?
 How can biotechnology be used to solve
world problems?
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Genes by Design
An Introduction to Food Biotechnology
by
Sharon Guthmiller, Cheryl Jacobs,
and Lavonne Meyer
South Dakota State University
FCS Extension Educators
A. Definitions of Food
Biotechnology…
1.
Includes both the traditional forms of
fermentation and crossbreeding
2.
The use of living organisms to move
specific desirable traits from one
organism to another
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
B. Traditional and
Conventional
Methods…
1.
Date back to the first attempts (8000 BC) to
improve the food supply (saving best seeds)
2.
Include yeast and fermentation processes
(using microorganisms to create different
foods)
3.
Include crossbreeding and hybridization (to
create superior plants or animals)
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
C. Conventional & traditional
crossbreeding methods…
1.
Had their beginnings with Gregor Mendel’s
discovery in 1860 of dominant and recessive
heredity traits in crossbreeding peas
2.
Can be inexact and time consuming
3.
Have led to development of seedless grapes,
tangerines, and nectarines through conventional
breeding and physiology
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
One example…
How would you select for a medium sized red rose,
enhanced with white, with a yellow center?
•This would be a very slow process by natural
selection methods!
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
D. Biotechnology today…
1.
Is a precise scientific process including techniques to
obtain genetically engineered or transgenic plants and
animals.
(Gene Splicing)
2.
Involves gene transfer from one organism to another.
3.
Provides tools to help combat disease, fight hunger,
promote human health, and protect the environment.
4.
Uses DNA and recombinant DNA.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
E. Biotechnology
advances…
1.
1970s- the discovery that a soil bacterium causes
disease in plants by transferring its own DNA into
the plant.
2.
1982- insulin used in the treatment of diabetes is from
one of the first genetically engineered organisms.
By inserting a human gene into the genetic code of a
bacterium, researchers found they could generate a
consistent, reliable source of insulin.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
F. Fighting disease…
1.
Interferon used for the treatment of cancer,
heart disease, and anemia is a genetically
engineered product
2.
Genetically engineered foods have potential to
offer higher levels of antioxidant vitamins to
reduce risk of disease.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
G. Human health…
1.
In the not-too-distant future, many foods may be
genetically engineered to deliver higher proteins,
vitamins, and minerals.
 Golden
rice is an example of this. The rice contains
beta-carotene, a precursor of vitamin A. Vitamin A
deficiency affects 230 million children throughout
the world. It is hoped this product can help alleviate
the problems associated with vitamin A deficiency.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
H. Genetically engineered
foods…
1. Must be labeled only if they differ significantly
from the traditional plant or food.

For example: if the nutritional value is altered or the potential
to cause an allergic reaction is altered.
2. Include tomatoes, potatoes, canola, corn,
soybeans, and sugar beets.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
I. Regulatory Agencies…
1. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is responsible
for holding plant varieties to the safety standard of
any traditional food product.

Consults with developers to ensure that foods
derived from new plant varieties are safe to eat.

Provides guidance on needed information to insure
food safety
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Regulatory Agencies cont…
2. USDA-APHIS (USDA Animal & Plant Health
Inspection Service) regulates the safe field testing of
new genetically engineered plant varieties.


Time from research starting on a new genetically
engineered plant until it receives clearance could
take up to 10 years.
APHIS has strict rules about how lab and field
trials are conducted. Materials must be
incinerated when the project is completed!
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Regulatory Agencies cont…
3. EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has
authority over all new pesticides. This includes
all new genetically engineered plants that
produce their own protection against pests.

Considers human safety, effectiveness on the target
pest, impact on the environment, and endangered
species before registering a new product.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
J. Future crops and foods
may include:
1. Release and acceptance of golden rice as part of
the answer to vitamin A deficiency concerns.
2. Wheat grown to eliminate allergic reactions.
3. Edible vaccines in fruits such as bananas.
4. Pharmaceuticals synthesized in corn.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
K. Concerns and
controversies…
1.
Are the food safety issues being met?
2.
What are the regulatory processes that genetically
engineered food must adhere to before approval?
3.
Have enough long-term studies been done to
verify safety?
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Concerns and
controversies cont…
4. Have potential dangers to the environment and
genetic resources had enough study to merit total
acceptance?

Examples: the monarch butterfly, StarLink
corn, creation of a “super weed”, etc.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Concerns and
controversies cont…
5. Other concerns & controversies:
 Labeling of
 Social
genetically engineered food
issues
 Economic
and trade issues
 Religious
issues
 Ethics
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
L. The future…

Biotechnology, for the most part, has been readily
accepted and welcomed as a new science for
products today. It offers hope for 1) food security,
2) better nutrition, 3) healthier individuals, and 4)
resistance to disease world-wide.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
M. Reasons for continued
search for answers…

To provide answers to questions about the effect of
biotechnology and it’s effects on the environment,
society, economy, and ethics.

To verify that food biotechnology is a vital link in the
continual process of improvement of foods.

To ultimately be accepted or rejected by the consumer.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Conclusion…

Biotechnology has been accepted in the laboratories and
the farm fields.

If it will be readily accepted in the grocery store and on
your dining room table, is up to you.

“Genes by Design” empowers you with knowledge about
biotechnology and will help you make critical decisions
about how biotechnology will affect you in the future.
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
Resources:

South Dakota State University Ag Research

Websites:
Iowa State University
http://www.biotech.iastate.edu/
National Agricultural Library
http://www.nal.usda.gov/bic/

South Dakota State University class
Plant Science 593 Agriculture Biotechnology
South Dakota State University * College of Agriculture & Biological Sciences * Cooperative Extension Service
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