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Flashcards in New Genes For Old Deck (15):

Explain how selective breeding can contribute to improved agricultural yields

Selective breeding improves crops snd livestock, such as increasing disease resistance or milk yeild


How are selected genes transferred?

They are artificially transferred from one living organism to another


What is the transfer of genes called?

Genetic engineering or genetic modification


What can the transfer of genes produce?

Organisms with different characteristics


In the future what can genetic engineering be used for?

To change a person's genes and cure certain disorders


What can a selected breeding programme lead to?

Inbreeding, which can cause health problems within the speices


Explain how a selective breeding programme may reduce the gene pool leading to problems of inbreeding

- accumulation of harmful recessive characteristics
- reduction in variation


Explain some potential advantages and risks of genetic engineering

Advantage - organisms with desired features are produced rapidly
Disadvantage - inserted genes may have unexpected harmful effects


Understand the principles of genetic engineering

- selection of desired characteristics
- isolation of genes responsible
- insertion of the genes into other organisms
- replication of these organisms


What could gene therapy involve?

Body cells or gametes


Explain why gene therapy involving gametes is controversial?

- reduction in genetic diversity of the human gene pool could increase vulnerability to new diseases
- very little is known about gene regulation or the mechanisms of embryological development. The results of premature use of such techniques could be worse than the diseases they are meant to cure


What is gene therapy?

Changing a person's genes in an attempt to cure disorders is called gene therapy


Discuss the ethical issues involved in genetic modification

- genetically modified plants may cross-breed with wild plants and release their new genes into the environment
- GM foods may not be safe to eat in the long term
- just replacing faulty genes, parents may want to engineer the genetic make-up of their child (creating designer babies)


Describe some examples of genetic engineering

- the production of human insulin by genetically engineered bacteria
- transferring resistance to herbicides, frost damage or disease to crop plants
- taking the genes that control beta-carotene production and putting them into rice. Humans can then convert the beta-carotene from the rice into vitamin A


Describe the process of selective breeding

- selection of the desired characteristics in parents
- allow the individuals to cross breed
- selection of desired offspring and allow these to become parents of the next generation