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Stephanie St.Onge , Michelle Vance, Jonathan Wright, Alton Havey. Genetic Engineering. Gene:. “A locatable region of genomic sequence, corresponding to a unit of inheritance, which is associated with regulatory regions, transcribed regions, and or other functional sequence regions".

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Stephanie st onge michelle vance jonathan wright alton havey

Stephanie St.Onge, Michelle Vance, Jonathan Wright, Alton Havey

Genetic Engineering

Genetic engineering

“A locatable region of genomic sequence, corresponding to a unit of inheritance, which is associated with regulatory regions, transcribed regions, and or other functional sequence regions".

("Genes-what are genes?," 2011)

  • “Genes reside on a specific stretch of DNA that codes for a type of protein, or for an RNA chain that has a particular function in the organism. All living things depend on genes, as they specify all proteins and functional RNA chains("Genes-what are genes?," 2011.”

  • The 4 chemical bases: A, T, C, and G are the building blocks for the 30,000 genes found in human DNA.

(Orlando, 2011)


“A genetically determined characteristic or condition. Traits may be physical, such as hair color or leaf shape, or they may be behavioral, such as nesting in birds and burrowing in rodents. Traits typically result from the combined action of several genes, though some traits are expressed by a single gene.”

  • Genes hold the information to build and maintain an organism's cells and pass genetic TRAITS to offspring.

  • The 4 bases are used to form the 20 amino acids that code for the 100,000 human proteins.

  • Proteins form traits.

(American Heritage, 2011)

(Orlando, 2011)

Types of traits
Types of Traits




  • Traits influenced by nurture such as language and education.

  • Traits influenced by genetic makeup, or nature such as, gender and chromosomal disease.

  • Traits influenced by both nature and nurture such as skin color and heart disease.

(Orlando, 2011)

Human genome project
Human Genome Project

Project Goals:

  • “identifyall the approximately 20,000-25,000 genes in human DNA.”

  • “determinethe sequences of the 3 billion chemical base pairs that make up human DNA.”

  • “storethis information in databases.”

  • improve tools for data analysis,

  • “transferrelated technologies to the private sector.”

  • “addressthe ethical, legal, and social issues (ELSI) that may arise from the project.”


  • All species have same coding system, therefore, genes can move between species.

  • Epigens: Turns genes on or off.

  • Epigens are influenced by the environment, such as ingesting green tea to “turn off” cancer genes.

  • Epigens are also inheritable in that a woman’s diet during pregnancy can effect the development of the child’s genetics.

(US Department of Energy, 2011)

(Orlando, 2011)

Recombinant dna
Recombinant DNA

  • “The recombinant DNA process is the most dramatic technological tool to date.”

  • Recombinant DNA is created by the “practice of altering DNA by splicing parts of one into the other.”

  • “The biologist is learning how to manipulate, recombine and reorganize living tissue into new forms and shapes…”

(Edge & Groves, 2006)

Genetic testing
Genetic Testing

Genetic testing:

  • “Tests done for clinical genetic purposes. Genetic tests may be done for diverse purposes pertaining to clinical genetics, including the diagnosis of genetic disease in children and adults; the identification of future disease risks; the prediction of drug responses; and the detection of risks of disease to future children.”

(Medicine Net, Inc, 2002)

Gene therapy
Gene Therapy

  • “The treatment of genetic disease by the administration of genes to correct an absent or defective gene” (Edge & Groves, 2006)

  • This therapy is accomplished through the direct intervention of the human genome through a process known as Genetic Engineering.

Genetic enhancement
Genetic Enhancement

  • “The transfer of genetic material intended to modify nonpathological human traits. The term commonly is used to describe efforts to make someone not just well, but better than well, by optimizing attributes or capabilities -- perhaps by raising an individual from standard to peak levels of performance.”

(National Human Genome Research Institute, 2006)

Genetic engineering

  • “The science of altering and cloning genes to produce a new trait in an organism or to make a biological substance, such as a protein or hormone. Genetic engineering mainly involves the creation of recombinant DNA, which is then inserted into the genetic material of a cell or virus.”

  • Genetic Engineering has given rise to many Ethical questions and considerations.

(American Heritage, 2011)

Designer babies
Designer Babies

“A baby developing from an embryo created by in-vitro fertilization and selected because it had or lacked particular genes, the genetic makeup often having been modified by genetic engineering. “

(, 2011)

The ethics of genetic engineering questions for consideration
The Ethics of Genetic Engineering Questions for Consideration:

  • Do we really want to know about our genetic makeup?

  • Will the ability to Genetically Engineer leat to the production of Designer Babies?

  • Is it ok for strictly medicinal purposes? Could a line be drawn between therapeutic and enhancement?

  • Could the engineering or manipulation of life be considered an act of playing God or as interference with God’s will?

  • Will Genetic Engineering put an end to natural selection, the traditional process of evolution?

Genetic engineering healthcare implications
Genetic Engineering:Healthcare Implications

  • Freedom of knowledge.

  • Potential insurance rates being set based on gene tests.

    • Genetic Discrimination or neglect of lesser genetic models.


  • US Department of Energy. (2011, July 25). Human genome project. Retrieved from

  • Genes-what are genes?. (2011, December 19). Retrieved from

  • Orlando, J. (2011, November 17). Genetic testing and enhancement outline: Medical

    ethics. Class Handout,

  • trait. (n.d.). The American Heritage® Science Dictionary. Retrieved December 19, 2011, from website:

  • Medicine Net, Inc. (2002, December 10). Genetic testing definition. Retrieved from

  • genetic manipulation. (n.d.). The American Heritage® Science Dictionary. Retrieved December 19, 2011, from website:

  • Edge, R. S., & Groves, J. R. (2006). Ethics of healthcare: A guide for clinical practice. (3rd ed., p. 315). Clifton Park, NY: Delmar

  • National Human Genome Research Institute. (2006, April). Genetic enhancement. Retrieved from

  • designer baby. (n.d.). Unabridged. Retrieved December 19, 2011, from website: baby