Biotechnology Products – Transgenic Plants, Transgenic Animals

Biotechnology Products

Biotechnology is a broad field of biology, involving the use of living systems and organisms to develop or make products.

The products produced by genetically engineered organisms are called biotechnology products.

Today bacteria, plants, and animals are genetically engineered to produce biotechnology products.

Organisms that have a foreign gene inserted into them are called transgenic organisms.

Transgenic Bacteria

Recombinant DNA technology is used to produce bacteria that replicate in large vats called bioreactors. If the foreign gene is replicated and actively expressed, a large quantity of protein product can be acquired. Biotechnology items produced by bacteria, such as insulin, human growth hormone, tissue plasminogen activator, hemophilia factor Vm, and Hepatitis B vaccine are now in the market.


Advantages of Transgenic Bacteria

Promoting Health of plants
Transgenic bacteria have actually been produced to promote the health of plants, for example, bacteria that normally live on plants and encourage the development of ice crystals have been altered from frost – plus to frost – minus bacteria. Also, a bacterium that normally colonizes the roots of plants has actually now been endowed with genes (from another bacterium) that code for an insect toxin. The toxin secures the roots from pests.

Cleaning up after oil spills
Bacteria can be picked for their ability to degrade a particular compound and then this capability can be improved by genetic engineering. For instance, naturally taking place bacteria may be crafted to do an even much better job of tidying up beaches after oil spills.

As Bio-filters
Industries have discovered that bacteria can be used as biofilters to prevent airborne chemical toxins from being vented into the air. They can also eliminate sulfur from coal before it is burned and assist to clean up toxic waste dumps.

One such strain was given a gene that allowed it to clean up levels of toxins that would have killed other strains. Even more, these bacteria were given “suicide” genes that caused them to self-destruct when the job had been accomplished.

Synthesis of Organic Chemicals
Organic chemicals are often manufactured by having catalysts act on precursor molecules or by using bacteria to carry out the synthesis. Today, it is possible to go one step further and to control the genes that code for these enzymes.

For example, biochemists found a strain of bacteria that is specifically proficient at producing phenylalanine; a natural chemical required to make aspartame, the dipeptide sweetener better known as NutraSweet. They isolated, altered, and formed a vector for the appropriate genes so that various bacteria could be genetically engineered to produce phenylalanine.

Bioleaching capabilities
Many major mining companies already utilize bacteria to acquire various metals. Genetic engineering may boost the capability of bacteria to draw out copper, uranium, and gold from low-grade sources. Some mining companies are testing genetically engineered organisms that have actually improved bioleaching abilities.

2.Transgenic Plants

Strategies have been developed to introduce foreign genes into immature plant embryos, or into plant cells that have had the cell wall removed and are called protoplasts. It is possible to treat protoplasts with an electric current while they are suspended in a liquid containing foreign DNA. The electric current makes small, self-scaling holes in the plasma membrane through which genetic material can enter. Then a protoplast will develop into a complete plant.



Advantages of Transgenic Plants

Foreign genes transferred to cotton, com, and potato strains have made these plants resistant to insects because their cells now produce an insect toxin. Likewise, soybeans have actually been made resistant to a common herbicide. Some corn and cotton plants are both insects and herbicide-resistant.

In 1999 these transgenic crops were planted on more than 70 million acres around the world and the acreage is anticipated to triple in about five years. Improvements to still come for are increased protein or starch material and modified oil or amino acid structure.

Agribusiness companies also are in the process of developing transgenic variations of wheat and rice in addition to com. This is considered an absolute necessity if the 2020 international demand for rice, wheat, and com is to be met. World grain harvests have actually continued to increase since the 1960s when special high-yield hybrid plants were developed during the so-called green revolution. But the per capita production has actually now flattened out because of continued population growth.

Boost CO2 consumption and lower water loss
The hope is that genetic engineering will allow farmers to go beyond the yield barrier. Maybe, the stomata, the pore-like openings in the leaves, could be become improve carbon dioxide intake or reduce water loss. Another possible goal is to increase the efficiency of the enzyme Rubisco which captures CO2 in the majority of plants.

Further Reading:  Collenchyma: Definition, Structure, Characteristic, Types, and Functions of Collenchyma

A group of Japanese researchers is trying to introduce the C4 cycle into the rice. Plants that utilize the C4 cycle avoid the inefficiency of carboxylase by using different ways of capturing CO2. Unlike the single gene transfers that have been done so far, these modifications would require a comprehensive re-engineering of plant cells.

Production of biodegradable plastic
Single gene transfers will cause plants to produce various items. A weed called mouse-eared cress has actually been engineered to produce a naturally degradable plastic (polyhydroxy-butyrate) in cell granules. Plants are being engineered to produce human hormonal agents, clotting factors, and antibodies in their seeds.

Production of Chemicals
One type of antibody made by com can deliver radioisotopes to tumor cells, and another made by soybeans can be used as a treatment for herpes. Plant-made antibodies are affordable and there is little worry over contamination with pathogens that could infect individuals. Clinical trials have actually started.

Transgenic Animals

Techniques have been developed to insert genes into the eggs of animals. It is possible to micro eggs by hand, but another method utilizes vortex mixing.

Vortex Mixing Method
The eggs are positioned in an agitator with DNA and silicon – carbide needles, and the needles make small holes through which the DNA can enter. When these eggs are fertilized, the resulting offspring are transgenic animals.

Advantages of Transgenic Animals

Utilizing this technique many types of animal eggs have used up the gene for bovine growth hormonal agent. The treatment has actually been used to produce larger fishes’, cows, pigs, rabbits, and sheep. Genetically engineered fishes are now being kept in ponds that offer no escape to the wild due to the fact that there is many issues that they will disturb or destroy natural ecosystems.

Gene pharming, the’ use of transgenic farm animals to produce pharmaceuticals is being pursued by a variety of firms.


Production of diagnostic proteins
Genes that code for therapeutic, and diagnostic proteins are incorporated into the animal’s DNA and the proteins appear in the animal’s milk. There are plans to produce drugs for the treatment of cystic fibrosis, cancer, blood diseases, and other conditions.

Anti-Blood clotting factors
Antithrombin III, for preventing blood clots during surgical treatment, is presently being produced by a herd of goats, and clinical trials have started. DNA including the gene of interest is injected into donor eggs. Following in vitro fertilization, the zygotes are positioned in host females where they develop. After female offspring fully grew, the product is secreted in the milk.

Production of human growth hormone
The researchers of the United States Department of Farming have actually had the ability to genetically craft mice to produce human growth hormone in their urine instead of in milk. They anticipate being able to utilize the exact same technique on bigger animals.

Urine is a preferable channel for a biotechnology product than milk due to the fact that all animals in a herd urinate – just females produce milk; animals start to urinate at birth – female do not produce milk until maturity; and it’s easier to extract proteins from urine than from milk.

Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) with Answers:

  1. What is the term for products produced by genetically engineered organisms in biotechnology?
    • a) Genetic Products
    • b) Synthetic Goods
    • c) Transgenic Items
    • d) Organic Materials
    • Answer: c
  2. What are organisms called when they have a foreign gene inserted into them?
    • a) Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs)
    • b) Transgenic Organisms
    • c) Mutated Organisms
    • d) Hybrid Organisms
    • Answer: b
  3. Which technology is used to produce bacteria in large vats called bioreactors?
    • a) Recombinant DNA Technology
    • b) Genetic Modification Technique
    • c) Bioreactor Engineering
    • d) Organism Replication Method
    • Answer: a
  4. Which of the following is NOT an advantage of transgenic bacteria?
    • a) Promoting Health of Plants
    • b) Cleaning up after Oil Spills
    • c) Synthesis of Organic Chemicals
    • d) Producing Biodegradable Plastic
    • Answer: d
  5. What is the role of transgenic bacteria in promoting the health of plants?
    • a) Enhancing Water Absorption
    • b) Producing Insect Toxin
    • c) Improving Soil Fertility
    • d) Accelerating Seed Germination
    • Answer: b
  6. Why are bacteria used as biofilters in industries?
    • a) To Produce Antibiotics
    • b) To Prevent Airborne Toxins
    • c) To Generate Energy
    • d) To Enhance Soil Aeration
    • Answer: b
  7. In the context of transgenic plants, what is the purpose of introducing foreign genes into cotton, corn, and potato strains?
    • a) Enhancing Flavor
    • b) Improving Color
    • c) Resisting Insects
    • d) Increasing Shelf Life
    • Answer: c
  8. What improvement is hoped for through genetic engineering in stomata of transgenic plants?
    • a) Increased Protein Content
    • b) Lower Water Loss
    • c) Enhanced Flowering
    • d) Improved Photosynthesis
    • Answer: b
  9. What is the anticipated impact of genetic engineering on agribusiness for wheat, rice, and corn?
    • a) Decreased Production
    • b) Unchanged Yield
    • c) Increased Protein Content
    • d) Meeting Global Demand
    • Answer: d
  10. Which method is used to insert genes into the eggs of animals for creating transgenic animals?
    • a) Micro Injection
    • b) Vortex Mixing
    • c) Electroporation
    • d) Sonication
    • Answer: b
  11. What is gene pharming in the context of transgenic animals?
    • a) Planting Genes in Soil
    • b) Producing Genetically Modified Fish
    • c) Using Transgenic Farm Animals to Produce Pharmaceuticals
    • d) Engineering Genes for Agricultural Crops
    • Answer: c
  12. How are diagnostic proteins produced in transgenic animals?
    • a) Injecting Proteins Into Bloodstream
    • b) Incorporating Genes Into Animal DNA
    • c) Administering Oral Medications
    • d) Extracting Proteins From Fur
    • Answer: b
  13. Which biotechnology product is currently being produced by a herd of goats for preventing blood clots during surgery?
    • a) Insulin
    • b) Antithrombin III
    • c) Human Growth Hormone
    • d) Tissue Plasminogen Activator
    • Answer: b
  14. Why is urine considered a preferable channel for biotechnology products in transgenic animals compared to milk?
    • a) All Animals Produce Urine
    • b) Urine Extraction is Easier
    • c) Milk Production is Limited to Females
    • d) Animals Start Urinating at Birth
    • Answer: b
  15. What is the primary goal of introducing the C4 cycle into rice by Japanese researchers?
    • a) Increase Efficiency of Rubisco
    • b) Improve Carbon Dioxide Intake
    • c) Enhance Water Absorption
    • d) Boost Protein Synthesis
    • Answer: b
  16. What is the primary purpose of using vortex mixing in the creation of transgenic animals?
    • a) Enhancing Genetic Diversity
    • b) Facilitating DNA Entry Into Eggs
    • c) Inducing Genetic Mutations
    • d) Promoting Animal Reproduction
    • Answer: b
  17. What is the potential application of transgenic animals in the production of biodegradable plastic?
    • a) Producing Synthetic Fabrics
    • b) Creating Durable Containers
    • c) Generating Renewable Energy
    • d) Forming Cell Granules for Plastic Production
    • Answer: d
  18. In which part of transgenic animals do diagnostic proteins appear after incorporating genes into their DNA?
    • a) Skin
    • b) Blood
    • c) Fur
    • d) Milk
    • Answer: d
  19. What biotechnology product is being produced by genetically engineered mice in their urine?
    • a) Insulin
    • b) Human Growth Hormone
    • c) Antibiotics
    • d) Clotting Factors
    • Answer: b
  20. Which department in the United States is involved in genetically crafting mice to produce human growth hormone in urine?
    • a) Department of Energy
    • b) Department of Agriculture
    • c) Department of Health and Human Services
    • d) Department of Commerce
    • Answer: b
  21. What is the significance of using transgenic animals in gene pharming for the production of pharmaceuticals?
    • a) Reduced Drug Cost
    • b) Lower Environmental Impact
    • c) Lower Risk of Contamination
    • d) Enhanced Genetic Diversity
    • Answer: c
  22. Which biotechnology product is NOT mentioned as being produced by transgenic animals in the summary?
    • a) Insulin
    • b) Human Growth Hormone
    • c) Antibiotics
    • d) Pesticides
    • Answer: d
  23. What is the commonality among biotechnology products produced from genetically engineered bacteria, plants, and animals?
    • a) They Are All Medicinal Products
    • b) They Are All Synthetically Made
    • c) They Involve Transgenic Organisms
    • d) They Are All Artificial Substitutes
    • Answer: c
Further Reading:  Foods for Healthy Hair


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

1. What is biotechnology, and how is it related to living organisms?

  • Answer: Biotechnology is a broad field of biology that involves using living systems and organisms to develop or produce products. It is related to living organisms through the genetic engineering of bacteria, plants, and animals to create biotechnology products.

2. What are transgenic organisms, and how are they created?

  • Answer: Transgenic organisms are those that have a foreign gene inserted into them. They are created through techniques such as recombinant DNA technology, where genes from one organism are introduced into another to achieve specific characteristics or traits.

3. How is recombinant DNA technology used to produce biotechnology products in bacteria?

  • Answer: Recombinant DNA technology is used to produce bacteria in large vats called bioreactors. Foreign genes are inserted into bacteria, and if the genes are replicated and actively expressed, a significant quantity of protein products, such as insulin or human growth hormone, can be obtained.

4. What are the advantages of using transgenic bacteria?

  • Answer: Transgenic bacteria have various advantages, including promoting the health of plants, cleaning up after oil spills, acting as biofilters in industries, and synthesizing organic chemicals. They can also be engineered for enhanced bioleaching capabilities in the mining industry.

5. How are foreign genes introduced into plants to create transgenic plants?

  • Answer: Strategies involve introducing foreign genes into immature plant embryos or plant cells with the cell wall removed (protoplasts). This can be achieved by treating protoplasts with an electric current in a liquid containing foreign DNA, leading to the development of a complete plant.

6. What improvements have been made in transgenic plants, and what challenges are addressed?

  • Answer: Transgenic plants have been modified for pest and herbicide resistance. Ongoing efforts aim to increase protein or starch content, modify oil or amino acid structure, and address challenges related to global demand for crops like wheat, rice, and corn.
Further Reading:  MCQs of Phylum Platyhelminthes

7. How does genetic engineering contribute to the development of transgenic animals?

  • Answer: Techniques, such as the vortex mixing method, are used to insert genes into animal eggs. This results in transgenic animals with altered characteristics. The gene pharming technique utilizes transgenic farm animals to produce pharmaceuticals, including diagnostic proteins and other therapeutic agents.

8. What products are produced by transgenic animals, and how is gene pharming applied?

  • Answer: Transgenic animals can produce diagnostic proteins, antibiotics, hormones, and other therapeutic proteins. Gene pharming involves incorporating genes into the animal’s DNA, and the proteins appear in the animal’s milk. This method is applied for the production of drugs for various medical conditions.

9. Why is urine considered a preferable channel for biotechnology products in transgenic animals?

  • Answer: Urine is considered preferable because all animals in a herd urinate, while only females produce milk. Animals start to urinate at birth, while females do not produce milk until maturity. Additionally, it is easier to extract proteins from urine than from milk.

10. What is the significance of using genetically engineered mice to produce human growth hormone in urine?

  • Answer: Genetically engineered mice producing human growth hormone in urine is significant because urine is a more accessible and preferable channel for biotechnology product extraction compared to milk. This method is anticipated to be applied to larger animals as well.

11. How are biotechnology products from bacteria, plants, and animals used in various industries?

  • Answer: Biotechnology products, including pharmaceuticals, organic chemicals, and bioleaching agents, are used in industries such as healthcare, manufacturing, agriculture, and mining. They contribute to advancements in medicine, environmental management, and sustainable agriculture.

12. What are the future prospects and challenges in the field of biotechnology?

  • Answer: The future of biotechnology includes further advancements in genetic engineering, crop improvement, and pharmaceutical production. Challenges involve ethical considerations, environmental impact assessments, and ensuring the safety of biotechnology products for human and environmental health.



The tutorial on Biotechnology Products explains the vast field of biology where living systems and organisms are manipulated to produce valuable products. Here is a brief summary:

Biotechnology Products:

  • Definition: Biotechnology involves using genetically engineered organisms to produce various products.
  • Transgenic Organisms: Organisms with foreign genes inserted into them are termed transgenic.

Transgenic Bacteria:

  • Recombinant DNA Technology: Utilized in large vats (bioreactors) to produce bacteria that express foreign genes, yielding products like insulin and vaccines.
  • Advantages: Transgenic bacteria contribute to plant health, oil spill cleanup, biofiltration, organic chemical synthesis, and bioleaching in mining.

Transgenic Plants:

  • Gene Introduction Strategies: Techniques for introducing foreign genes into plant embryos or protoplasts.
  • Advantages: Transgenic plants exhibit insect and herbicide resistance, with ongoing efforts to enhance protein, starch, oil, and amino acid content.

Transgenic Animals:

  • Gene Insertion Techniques: Methods, including vortex mixing, to insert genes into animal eggs, producing transgenic animals.
  • Advantages: Transgenic animals contribute to pharmaceutical production, producing diagnostic proteins, anti-blood clotting factors, and human growth hormone.

Summary Highlights:

  • Bacteria: Genetic engineering of bacteria aids in diverse applications, from agriculture to environmental cleanup.
  • Plants: Transgenic crops address pest and herbicide challenges, with ongoing research to enhance yields and environmental adaptability.
  • Animals: Gene pharming in transgenic animals supports the production of pharmaceuticals, diagnostic proteins, and therapeutic agents.

In conclusion, biotechnology products from genetically engineered bacteria, plants, and animals play crucial roles in addressing challenges across various industries, promising advancements in medicine, agriculture, and environmental management.