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Biotechnology: Human Health. Prof. B. D Lakhchaura. State Biotechnology Programme, Govt. of Uttaranchal Biotech Bahavan, Haldi, U.S. Nagar . Recombinant DNA Technology ushered a revolution in Biotechnology. US Biotech Company “Genetech” cloned Human Insulin gene in E-coli 1978 .

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Biotechnology: Human Health

Prof. B. D Lakhchaura

State Biotechnology Programme, Govt. of Uttaranchal Biotech Bahavan, Haldi, U.S. Nagar

Recombinant DNA Technology ushered a revolution in Biotechnology
  • US Biotech Company “Genetech” cloned Human Insulin gene in E-coli 1978
Molecular Biotechnology can be exploited for application in Medical Science for the following:

1. Development of rapid and accurate diagnostic methods against infectious and non-infectious ailments.

2. Development of prophylactics and therapeutics for prevention and treatment of the disease

Production of various Recombinant Proteins by Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cells

Recombinant proteins produced by S. cerevisiae expression system

Recombinant Baculo viruses have been used with insect cell lines for producing high yield of recombinant proteins which can be used as diagnostics, prophylactics & therapeutics
Similarly number of mammalian cell lines have been used for producing proteins consisting of multi peptides
Production of molecular diagnostics

ELISA a simple but highly sensitive immuno diagnostic assay system

Discovery of Hybridoma technology for producing monoclonal antibody added the much needed specificity dimension to immuno-diagnostic procedures
Use of nucleic acid hybridization probes as diagnostic agents
  • Initially radioactive probes were used which required viewing after autoradiography
  • Now a days non-radioactive probes have been develop for diagnosis of various diseases such as:
  • Malaria
  • Legionella pneumopholia
  • Salmonella typhi
  • Campilobacter hyointstinalis
  • Escherichia coli
  • Trypnosoma ruzi (chagas desies uses PCR for detection for 188 bp DNA)
As all genetic changes not necessarily altered restriction sites PCR/ OLA procedure can be used for detecting genetic changes
Using c-DNA cloning a large number of human proteins have been produced a partial list is given below
OKT-3 a murine monoclonal antibody cleared by FDA for use as immuno suppressive agent for patients receiving organ transplant

Humanization of the Meurin monoclonal antibodies makes them useful for treatment in Humans. These therapy are specially valuable for treatment of Cancer

Views of Pseudomous exotoxin A conjugate with CD 4 coding sequence creates a potential drug for treatment of HIV
Human Gene Therapy

Number of single gene disorders have been selected for gene therapy

Two forms of Human Gene Therapy

1. Ex-vivo Gene Therapy

2. In-vivo Gene Therapy

Most exciting area of Biotechnology research being perused currently
  • Major Sources of stem cells
  • Undifferentiated embryos or single cells from the embryos
  • 2. Chord Blood
  • 3. Bone marrow
Applications of Stem Cells
  • Organ transplant – renewal of organs such as degenerative liver, heart, lungs or blood cells using stem cells
  • For creating transgenic animal lines for studying human disorders like Cystic fibrosis, Alzheimer's, Parkinson’s diseases etc.
  • For treatment of brain disorders such as Parkinson’s diseases, Alzheimer's disease or multiple sclerosis or other diseases of brain and spinal cord

Global scenario of Biotechnological application in human health in enjoys enormous excitement and worthwhile achievements in areas of

  • Prophylactic – Vaccines (attenuated whole cell vaccines, peptide vaccines, DNA vaccines)
  • Diagnostics – molecular diagnostics using immunological techniques and nucleic acid based techniques
  • Therapeutic agent development – drug designing, drug targeting, gene therapy are becoming applicable in the field

As far as India is concerned the research in medical biotechnology remains and limited to certain areas such as development of subunit vaccines, DNA vaccines and diagnostic kits for detection of viral diseases like HIV etc. Medical biotechnology requires a greater focus and more strengthening public and private sources. More investment in R & D can only fetch results which can have global significance.