Biotechnology and Its Applications

Biotechnology is a broad field that deals with the exploitation of living organisms using techniques and other living organisms, to manufacture products beneficial for human beings. Biotechnology exhibits a wide range of applications in the field of medicine and agriculture and has proved beneficial in improving health and food quality.

Applications of Biotechnology

In Agriculture

Scientists have been working on the new techniques in the agricultural sector which will prove beneficial in increasing crop production without affecting human health. In today’s scenario, it is very difficult to feed a huge population with limited resources. Biotechnology has helped in serving the purpose.

Genetically modified crops or the transgenic crops are one such application which provides the crops with a beneficial trait.

Genetically Modified Crops

  • The desired gene is inserted into the crop and the transgenic crop is made.
  • This has improved the crop quality and yield.
  • There is less dependency on pesticides and fertilizers. In turn, the soil quality has also improved.
  • The crops are less vulnerable to biotic and abiotic stresses.
  • Bt crop is an example of a genetically modified crop. Bacillus thuringenesis is a bacterium that produces a protein which acts as an insecticide. It is inserted into the plant to produce a transgenic variety.
  • The transgenic crops will also be a source of edible vaccines in the near future.

In Medicine

Recombinant insulin and gene therapy are two of the rising applications of biotechnology in the field of medicine.

Recombinant Insulin

  • The gene sequence that codes for the human insulin was administered in the E.coli and transformed.
  • The DNA or the gene sequence was translated into proteins and isolated. There was enough insulin extracted from a single E.coli for the patients.

Gene therapy

  • It is yet another technique in which a gene sequence is introduced into a patient’s DNA to rectify a particular genetic disorder.
  • The DNA is introduced with the help of vectors such as retrovirus, adenovirus, and herpes simplex virus.
  • The gene sequences are either incorporated directly into the gametes or only into the body cells.

These applications are one of the remarkable discoveries in the field of biotechnology and have made life a lot easier. Further advancements are being made in science and technology to increase sustainability.

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The only function of the root is to absorb water and minerals for the plant.