Believe it or not, cloning is not just about creating an identical copy of something.  With recombinant DNA technology the food industry has been forever altered. In addition, we are beginning to become one step closer to physically being able to delete genes that simply are not desirable. In DNA cloning, a vector is introduced into a host cell so that it can then replicate. The most common vectors include an ecoli plasmid or a bacteriophage. Plasmid vectors replicate in unison with the host cell. Bacteriophage vectors multiply in a lytic cycle meaning that the will break out of the host cell and kill it. The goal of recombinant DNA cloning is to make the vector contain genes that have been genetically altered so that they can they began to take over and recreate cells with new genes.  Using restriction enzymes, DNA is cut and new DNA is entered is entered into the cells. Essentially this changes the cells as a whole and can produce several different results.(Lodish, Berk, Zipursky)

    There is a high probability that you may have consumed some type of genetically enhanced food. Genetically modified foods are very common because it allows for a more rapid mass production within the meat and produce businesses. By using recombinant DNA technology, foods are able to grow larger and can fight off pesticides on their own, thus improving the quality of foods.  

 What doesn’t sound great about getting more for your money within the food industry? The downfall of being able to produce genetically modified foods is that we do not yet know the long term effects of the chemicals we are injecting the produce with. Studies show, however, that the insulin – like growth  factor hormone that helps the fruit grow in size, is linked to several forms of cancer. (Urban) In addition to cancer genetically modified foods  are also hard on the environment. Once the produce is injected with the chemical , the crops will forever hold onto the chemical or traces of it. Within the food industry , people also fear that  pest will become resistant to the chemicals and thus lead us into an even bigger pest problem then we have today. (Urban) In turn, in order to fight them off stronger chemicals will be needed and those could potentially been even more harmful then the pest.

 So what's up with those designer babies?

In addition, this form of technology  also allows for the making of  “designer babies” . Recombinant DNA cloning has changed society by allowing scientist to determine which genes control certain traits and then to change them. (Cloning Fact Sheet) Numerous parents are willing to have their child formed in vitro just to ensure that they result with certain complexities, genders, or eye colors, however, through this technology a child can also be screened for genetic disorders that they will possibly develop. This is highly  beneficial and currently there are  several screenings that newborns receive to check for genetic disorders that are similar to those of a child formed in vitro.

 Why not design your babies? Have you ever wished that you could choose your child’s genes, you know the typical blond hair, blue eyes, tan skin? With these desires becoming easier to obtain , many fear that people will try to form a “ super race” of nearly what they consider to be “perfect” children. (Kleiner) If everyone had a designer baby then where does that leave those who are not created in vitro or perfectly to their parets wants? In addition , Many want a ban on designer children due to the fact that so much information Is revealed about the child before they are born. Those opposed to the idea of designers babies believe that the baby is just like any other child and that the parent should not have the right to know every little detail about them such as what disorders they will develop in the future.

 

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