Monday, June 7, 2010

History of Biotechnology

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Biotechnology has been practiced for thousands of years. It dates back to when man first learned how to plant crops or breed animals. The discovery of fermentation defined its beginning. The natural process involved microorganisms for the production of food and medicine. The method included making cheese and yogurt from milk; converting fruit juices into wine; leavening bread; and making beer, which the Egyptians recorded as a prescription medicine in 1600 B.C. Archeologists reveal that these early practices has were around between 5,000 to 10,000 B.C.

In 1919, a Hungarian engineer named Karl Ereky coined the word biotechnology. During that time, all techniques were referred to as production with the help of living organisms. By the end of nineteen century, the work of Gregor Mendel on traits and inheritance promoted the concept of the science through selective breeding. Humans then learned to select and grow the plants with bigger and sweeter fruits and tried to breed only healthy animals.

The 1970s pioneered modern biotechnology. Herb Boyer and Stanley Cohen demonstrated the generation of human genes with the aid of bacteria in 1973. Genetically modified (GM) bacteria were able to produce human insulin. The breakthrough led to the first vaccine for Hepatitis B.

The Human Genome Project in the1980s, was believed to be the most ambitious scheme. It was a plan to map out the human genome. It provided information about the roles of genes and how they compliment each other. The first draft was released in 2000. In 1985, genetic fingerprints began as credible evidence in the courtroom. Later on, forensic science became a protocol in investigations.

In 1994, scientists were able to identify the gene that determines gender. Eventually, the gay gene was found a few years later. Moreover, cloning was materialized in 1996, with Dolly the sheep.

Stem cells from human embryo were grown in laboratories starting in 2000. It was claimed that its potentials would extend to the development of a cure for diabetes and Parkinson's disease.

Presently, DNA technology has become the latest trend in science. Its application in many fields has achieved another level. With the support of research, it endures innovation despite the ethical debates that come along with it.

Biotechnology provides detailed information on Biotechnology, Biotechnology Market, Biotechnology Careers, Biotechnology Schools and more. Biotechnology is affiliated with Forensic Science Colleges [].

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