• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  3. 3
    3
  4. 4
    4
  5. 5
    5
  6. 6
    6
  7. 7
    7
  8. 8
    8
  9. 9
    9
  10. 10
    10
  11. 11
    11
  12. 12
    12
  13. 13
    13
  14. 14
    14
  15. 15
    15

Biology Issue Report on GM Foods

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

A Level Biology ? Unit 3 Issue Report Food Shortage March 2012 Course Code: AN03 Biology A Level 2009 Unit 3 - 6BIO3 -------------------------- ________________ Problem ? Producing Enough Food for the World?s Growing Population Food shortages are not a new problem but they have become more widespread in recent years. Food riots took place in Haiti in 2008 following demonstrations over the rising price of food and India suffered drought due to the failure of monsoons in 2009 (1). Famine is a very real issue right now in Africa with the Sahel region of West Africa facing a ?worsening food crisis (2)?. In the Horn of Africa (see fig 1) in 2011 tens of thousands of people died (estimates range between 50,000 and 100,000) from famine following a drought said to be the worst in 60 years (3). Climate change is one of the reasons behind the drought that triggered East Africa?s 2011 famine. As climate change is unlikely to be reversed in the near future, reduced rainfalls are expected to continue and a solution is needed to combat the diminished growth of crops and yield in arid, populated areas. The world population is nearly 7 billion at the moment and the United Nations estimates it will reach 9.3 billion by the middle of the century (4). The majority of the increase is expected to be in developing countries. The UN also states that food production must double by 2050 to meet the demand of the world?s growing population (5). ...read more.

Middle

The gene is taken into the nucleus and begins to be expressed, producing the desirable phenotype. In the case of the Monsanto corn, this means drought-resistance. Biologists have proven the technique works, as documented in the Monsanto application: “The presence of the MON 87460 insert in the maize nuclear genome is best shown by the Chi square (χ²) analysis of the segregation data. The results show that inheritance of the drought-tolerance trait in MON 87460 follows Mendelian principles. This indicates that the single insert is stably integrated in the nuclear genome and is neither located in the mitochondria nor in the chloroplasts.” Chi Squared is a statistical test measuring the differences between expected outcomes and observed outcomes. In this case, the maize would not be expected to contain the transgene. The statistical significance of the Chi Squared test shows that the transgene can be passed on to multiple future generations of the plant. In addition, Monsanto state they have confirmed the insert is stably integrated within the maize’s nuclear genome and being inherited in Mendelian fashion through the use of Southern Blot analyses. Southern Blot testing detects the specific sequence of DNA in the corn to show the location of the transfer DNA. This process involves separating the DNA strand and then allowing it to form base pairs with a DNA “probe” marked with radioactivity (the technique can also use an enzyme). The radioactive DNA can then be located and shown in what has become widely recognisable as a “genetic fingerprint” as seen in fig 3. ...read more.

Conclusion

Another alternative is to use technology such as optical crop sensors, drip irrigation and multi-use, multi-crop machines. Given that many areas with drought problems are also very poor areas then the large financial outlay may be prohibitive. Evaluation of the Relative Validity of the Information I Gathered and its Sources A lot of the information used regarding Monsanto GM corn has come from Monsanto?s press releases or the document they prepared for the regulatory bodies. This has the potential to be biased as the firm have financial interest in the corn and are likely to market the best aspects of it, perhaps making it seem better than it is. However, the work they have carried out is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the documentation I have used is officially scrutinised so I have some faith in the contents. The data on the genes used and the Agrobacteium mediated, Chi Squared and Southern Blot methods of genetic modification and analysis are reflected in both the Monsanto application and the FDA?s Biotechnology Consultation Note BNF 000116 The book ?50 Genetics Ideas You Really Need to Know? is written by Mark Henderson, Science Editor for the Times newspaper. He does not have any formal science training that I am aware of, so I reviewed the Brazil nut story on Academics Review website and am satisfied that it is genuine as it appears there also along with a reference to an academic paper on PubMed(12). ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Genetics, Evolution & Biodiversity section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

4 star(s)

****
Though demonstrating a good understanding of A level biology this is not a balanced account.

Marked by teacher Adam Roberts 26/06/2013

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Genetics, Evolution & Biodiversity essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Nature vs. Nurture - And its affect on intelligence, personality, and behavior

    4 star(s)

    can alter so that the traits slowly evolve from less desirable ones to more wanted ones. Nurture (environment), also plays a key role as a determining factor on one's intelligence. This is because of the following; Life experiences alter the influence of different factors on one's intelligence.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    MENTAL HEALTH

    4 star(s)

    In my opinion, I think the society today is confused about the concept of mental health. Furthermore, I also think there are negative stereotypes and attitudes that are surrounding mental illness. This then results in discrimination and isolation of people with mental illness, as well as their families and carers.

  1. Biology Report - Effect of Environment on Phenotype

    It is assumed that the group of cuttings placed in neutral water will have the most efficient root growth, and that the groups with altered pH will have less root growth. METHOD: -Materials: * 20 identical, 250 mL plastic cups * 5 large 1L plastic jugs * Marker pen *

  2. Edexcel Level 3 Extended Project - Should Embyonic Stem Cell Research be applied to ...

    According to The Economist, Bush stated stem cell research was immoral and unethical because it "would support the taking of innocent human life in the hope of finding medical benefits for others". However, when President Barack Obama was elected one of his first presidential acts was to lift the veto Bush placed on federal funding into embryonic stem cell research.

  1. DNA Database Advantage Or Disadvantage

    the DNA profiles of all known active offenders this funding was provided to increase the collection and analysis of DNA material November 7th 2005

  2. List areas of science that have raised ethical or moral issues

    (D5.3 AND D18.4) Gene therapy advantages and disadvantages Drawbacks that have kept gene therapy from being effective treatment > Problems with integration DNA with genome and division of cells have prevented long-lived and stability of treatment > The body's immune response against foreign object.

  1. Comparing Mitosis and Meiosis with reference to i. Chromosomesii. Biological significance

    Metaphase In Mitosis Metaphase stage the chromosomes go to the centre/equator of the spindle. The chromosomes get attached to spindle fibres at the centromere, when these contract; the individual chromatids get pulled apart slightly. In Meiosis Metaphase 1 is similar to Mitosis stage one but differs as chromosomes form a

  2. The purpose of this experiment is to identify plant pigments by separation, using thin ...

    dyes 15cm Ruler I have used this to draw the lines on the TLC slide Pencil I have used this draw lines on the TLC slide Fresh leaf material ? Grass, Nettle, Ivy I have used these three plant dyes to carry out the TLC experiment Distilled water I have

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work