Ques. 1 : Give an account of the techniques of Biotechnology?
Ans. The main techniques of biotechnology are - genetic engineering, cell culture, tissue culture, bio-processing, protein engineering, monoclonal antibody production and biosensor technology. As has been recognised all over the world, in the last fifteen years, there has been revolution in the field of Biotechnology as evidenced through new discoveries and inventions in
the areas of isolation and manipulation of genes, better understanding of biological molecules, the advent of recombinant DNA technique enabling
the genes to be transferred between organisms to produce scare proteins of plant and animal origin as also human growth factors and hormones.
Ques. 2 : Discuss in brief the Genetic engineering?
Ans. Genetic Engineering : The utilisation of genetic machinery of life for production of any special substance is called gene technology or genetic engineering. The genetic modification of micro- organisms, so vital for their utilisation in the production of useful biochemical, can be brought about by simple recombination or by complex genetic manipulations. Some of the
Isolation of Genes: Appropriate sequence of genes is directly obtained from genome of normal cell or from other cells. This is made possible by cleavage and denaturation of DNA extracted from the cells.
Synthesis of Genes: This is done by chemical methods. Dr. Hargobind Khurana reported this in 1970.
Recombinant DNA: Breakage of DNA molecule at two desired places to isolate a specific DNA fragment and then inserting it in another DNA molecule at a desired position results in a new gene product which is called as recombinant DNA (r-DNA). The receiving organism is said to be transgenic. Using this technique we can isolate and clone single copy of a gene or a DNA molecule into an indefinite number of copies, all identical.
Gene Cloning: Isolation of gene and replication of a single copy of gene or DNA segment into an infinite number of copies, all identical, is known as gene cloning. This becomes possible because vectors like plasmids and phages reproduce in their usual style even after insertion of foreign DNA. This inserted DNA will also replicate faithfully with parent DNA. Recently extensive
use of newly discovered polymerase chain reaction (PCR) has also been made for gene technology.
Ques. 3 : What is Tissue Culture?
Ans. Tissue Culture : Tissue culture is the technology of artificially growing micro-organisms or cells or tissues or organs to the desired genetic purity with properties such as high yield and disease resistance.
The microbes in culture are used in recombinant DNA technology and in a variety of industrial processes, plant cells and tissues are used for a variety of genetic manipulations. For example another culture is used for haploid breeding; gametic and somatic cell/tissue cultures are used for tapping gametoclonal and somaclonal variations or for production of artificial seeds. Transformation of protoplast in culture leads to production of useful transgenic plants. Embryo culture technique has also helped extending the range of distant hybridisation for plant breeding purposes. Animal cells are used for multiplication of superior livestock using a variety of techniques like Cloning of superior embryonic cells, transformation of cultured cells leading to the production of transgenic animals and in vitro fertilisation and transfer of embryos to surrogate mothers.
Ques. 4 : Briefly discuss microbial biotechnology?
Ans. Microbial Biotechnology : Micro organisms have been harnessed by man for the production of useful materials. The latest initiatives in Microbial Biotechnology have been taken in the following matters:
i)Rehabilitation of degraded land such as alkaline soil, mine dumps and dump from metallurgical factories, utilising microbial supports.
ii)Dissolution of pyretic shells by microbial methods to liberate entrapped noble metals like gold, silver etc. through the process of bio-techning of low and lean grade orders.
iii)Degradation of polyphenolic compounds using microbial approaches.
iv)Standardisation of shuttling vectors for E-coli and streptomyces having capabilities of accepting chester genes of Ansamycines.
v)Strengthening of microbial teaching and research in identified universities.
vi)Development of fungicides to contain fungal infections in plants and vegetables.
vii)Development of microbial enzymes active in extreme temperatures, novel antibiotics and bioactive proteins and other biomolecules for industrial use.