Examples of Genetic Engineering

In today’s world, genetic engineering is almost commonplace. There are many things we use and consume that are the result of genetic engineering. We either do not know or do not really care for the most part (see the pros and cons). But, a lot of things would not have been created if it was not for genetic engineering. Examples of genetic engineering are near infinite. Give or take a few more years, we should see more examples of genetic engineering. What are some examples?

One notable example of genetic engineering would be cloning. Before Dolly the Sheep was born, cloning was something out of fiction. In fiction, a clone would be created by using someone’s blood sample and some sort machine like an incubator. But, Dolly the Sheep’s creation dispelled that type of myth. Creating Dolly was a matter of trial and error. Upon the first successful clone, there was talk of possibly cloning a human using the same method. But, then United States President Bill Clinton issued an executive order that bans the practice of human cloning. There are companies in South Korea that plan to clone animals for commercial purposes.

The Mother Nature Network (mnn.com) lists twelve “bizarre” examples of genetic engineering.

In 2007, through genetic engineering, South Korean scientists created common house cats that can actually glow in the dark.

In 2010, Canada created the “Enviropig.” It is a pig that produces less phosphorous in its waste product. This could reduce the rates of red tide. Think of this as a means to protect aquatic life. However, it has yet to pass the legal tests.

Created by the University of Washington, there are plants with the sole purpose of combating pollution. Normally, green plants absorb the CO2 (carbon) in the air and then releases O2 (oxygen) into the atmosphere as a waste product. These special plants absorb the pollution in groundwater. Thus, it makes groundwater safer to drink and bathe in. The benefits of these plants would be clean groundwater and oxygen.

With the help of scorpion venom, there is a breed of cabbage that can kill caterpillars. These cabbages produce scorpion venom. However, the level is too low to do harm to humans. But, it is rather effective at killing insects. As the caterpillar starts biting at the leaves, it will ingest the scorpion venom. Thus, the caterpillar dies from the venom and the cabbage is saved.

In 2000, the first goat that can produce the protein found in spiders’ webs in its milk. This milk will apparently be able to make many further advancements in biological science.

In 2009, it was revealed that the University of Alberta created cows that produce less methane.

A normal example of genetic engineering would be creating bacteria for insulin production. This is crucial as it helps out many that are diagnosed with diabetes.

Through genetic engineering, there are foods that withstand the applications of herbicide. There are vegetables such as tomatoes that have natural pesticides. In a sense, these examples show that there are crops that are better resistant to insects along with needing lest herbicides.

While there are numerous examples of genetic engineering, there is no way of telling which is all organic and which is not the result of genetic engineering. At the moments, there are no labels telling the difference. If you do not want to consume foods that came from genetic engineering, you could try eating organic.

Overall, the examples of genetic engineering are vast and diverse for the most part. Many examples of genetic engineering are found in food and medicine. While there are examples, many will probably not realize it.