"Visions of World Benefit & Global Responsibility: Perspectives of McGill Students

Monday, July 30, 2007


The 21st century represents great advances in biotechnology. Biotechnology refers to those technical applications which use biological systems and its derivatives. It encompasses the study of gene, modification of gene to make new organisms and manipulation of genes to fulfill human needs. There are innovations developed such as the human genome project, genetically modified organisms, organ repair and transplantation, biodegradable fuels, and treatment of human infertility from the study of gene. DNA sequencing allowed the discovery of 20,000-50,000 genes of human, and constructed a library of human genes which serve as a reservoir of knowledge for human us.In the 21st century, a period with innovative ideas, development, and dynamics, people get to know more and more of what we really are. The human genome project represents a big leap in what humans know about themselves. By knowing oneself better, one can develop ways to benefit oneself and solve many of the previous unsolvable problems. The widespread use of gene technology is universal and equitable to all cultures and countries. The contribution it can bring to us is enormous. It has great impact on the world’s biggest issues such as health, environmental protection and pharmaceutics. The significance of this leap should be emphasized. DNA recombination allows us to do things we could not do like artificial organs, genetic testing and drugs. Genetic testing can allow not only the detection of genetically defective foetus, but we are at the stage of actually making changes in the foetus to prevent the birth of Down syndrome children or children with other defects. Also, DNA testing allows the detection of criminals and thus makes the world a much better and peaceful place. Biotechnology contributed in medicine, science, agriculture and forensics. In Medicine, Recombinant DNA technology allowed the production of major human organs artificially for transplantation such as skin or kidney. Also, the genetically modified organisms are resistant to pests, removing the use of pesticides in agriculture. Right now, new researches are being performed into the discovery of new drugs using biotechniques. In general, biotechnology allowed a new era of discoveries and contributed to an increase in knowledge of human toward living organisms. These new knowledge help us to solve the biggest environmental problems such pollution, decrease the use of natural resources, and give innate pests prevention to plants. The discovery of human genome allows us to have access to basic knowledge about our genetic make-up and contribute in the advancement of health development and technology.


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