The Pros And Cons Of Transgenesis

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Extracting genes from a bacteria, loading it into a microscopic gun and shooting it into the DNA structure of a plant sounds like something taken from a science fiction novel. In fact, it is a very real process called Transgenesis. Transgenesis, also known as Genetic Modification or GM for short, allows scientists to introduce foreign genes into a living organism to force the organism to exhibit a trait that otherwise, would not occur naturally or through selective cross breeding. Genetic Modification of food crops holds the potential to feed earth’s increasing population, improving human health, and could pave the way for advancements in a clean burning, alternative fuel sources known as biofuel. Conversely, there is an ever growing controversy…show more content…
Securing enough food to feed not only the human population but the livestock which supports us, has been an ever growing concern. The United Nations estimates more than 900 million people worldwide are undernourished and expects this to worsen by 2050 when the Earth’s population increases by 50%. GM varieties of crops such as corn and soybeans offer better yields and increased resistance to pests than non-GM varieties. In addition, GM crops offer other advantages including increased resistance to disease, drought, cold climate, and pests and herbicides. With such enhancements, we have a greater chance at sustaining conventional methods of agriculture and cattle-breeding while conserving precious resources to secure our future for generations to…show more content…
Scientists have made great strides in reducing the cost of the biofuel production process by modifying the structure of various plants. In a study published in the journal Science, by genetically modifying plants, the majority of the organic polymer which strengthens cell walls known as lignin can be removed. Doing so avoids the need to soak the plants in hot acid and cuts down the overall cost of the biofuel dramatically. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, biodiesel production reached 1.6 billion gallons in 2013. With a projected transportation fuel use of 214 billion gallons for 2015, biofuels represent approximately a 0.7% fuel

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