- 16.1: Introduction to Biotechnology and Genomics
- The study of nucleic acids began with the discovery of DNA, progressed to the study of genes and small fragments, and has now exploded to the field of genomics. Genomics is the study of entire genomes, including the complete set of genes, their nucleotide sequence and organization, and their interactions within a species and with other species. The advances in genomics have been made possible by DNA sequencing technology.
- 16.2: Biotechnology
- Biotechnology is the use of biological agents for technological advancement. Biotechnology was used for breeding livestock and crops long before the scientific basis of these techniques was understood. Biotechnology has grown rapidly through both academic research and private companies. The primary applications of this technology are in medicine (production of vaccines and antibiotics) and agriculture (genetic modification of crops, such as to increase yields).
- 16.3: Mapping Genomes
- Genome mapping is the process of finding the locations of genes on each chromosome. The maps created by genome mapping are comparable to the maps that we use to navigate streets. A genetic map is an illustration that lists genes and their location on a chromosome. Genetic maps provide the big picture and use genetic markers. A genetic marker is a gene or sequence on a chromosome that co-segregates (shows genetic linkage) with a specific trait.
- 16.4: Whole-Genome Sequencing
- Although there have been significant advances in the medical sciences in recent years, doctors are still confounded by some diseases, and they are using whole-genome sequencing to get to the bottom of the problem. Whole-genome sequencing is a process that determines the DNA sequence of an entire genome. Whole-genome sequencing is a brute-force approach to problem solving when there is a genetic basis at the core of a disease.
- 16.5: Applying Genomics
- The introduction of DNA sequencing and whole genome sequencing projects, particularly the Human Genome project, has expanded the applicability of DNA sequence information. Genomics is now being used in a wide variety of fields, such as metagenomics, pharmacogenomics, and mitochondrial genomics. The most commonly known application of genomics is to understand and find cures for diseases.
- 16.6: Genomics and Proteomics
- Proteins are the final products of genes, which help perform the function encoded by the gene. Proteins are composed of amino acids and play important roles in the cell. All enzymes (except ribozymes) are proteins that act as catalysts to affect the rate of reactions. Proteins are also regulatory molecules, and some are hormones. Transport proteins, such as hemoglobin, help transport oxygen to various organs. Antibodies that defend against foreign particles are also proteins.
Thumbnail Image Credit: "DNA Helix String" by qimono, Pixabay is licensed under CC BY 4.0
Contributors and Attributions
Connie Rye (East Mississippi Community College), Robert Wise (University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh), Vladimir Jurukovski (Suffolk County Community College), Jean DeSaix (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), Jung Choi (Georgia Institute of Technology), Yael Avissar (Rhode Island College) among other contributing authors. Original content by OpenStax (CC BY 4.0; Download for free at http://cnx.org/contents/185cbf87-c72...email@example.com).