- Genetic engineering is the manipulation of genes. It is also called recombinant DNA technology. In genetic engineering, pieces of DNA (genes) are introduced into a host by means of a carrier (vector) system. The foreign DNA becomes a permanent feature of the host, being replicated and passed on to daughter cells along with the rest of its DNA. Bacterial cells are transformed and used in production of commercially important products. The examples are production of human insulin (used against diabetes), human growth hormone (somatotrophin used to treat pituitary dwarfism), and infections which can be used to help fight viral diseases. Insulin is a hormone that converts extra blood glucose to glucose.
- It is produced by pancreas in the body. In people with deficiency of insulin, extra glucose is excreted in urine. This disease is called Diabetes mellitus. People suffering from it need to insulin every day.
- Using biotechnology techniques, bacteria can also be bioengineered for the production of therapeutic proteins, such as insulin, growth factors or antibodies.
- Some bacteria living in the gut of cattle, horses and other herbivores secrete cellulase, an enzyme that helps in the digestion of the cellulose contents of plant cell walls. Cellulose is the major source of energy for these animals. Generally plant cells contain cellulose. The bacteria present in the stomach of cattle will help in the digestion of cellulose
Escherichia coli that live in the human large intestine synthesize vitamin B and release it for human use. Similarly, Clostridium butyclicum is used for commercial preparation of riboflavin, and vitamin