Genetically Modified Plants

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Genetically Modified Plants

Genetically Modified Plants


All cultivated plants have been genetically modified over centuries through traditional processes of selection and breeding. The term genetically modified organism (GMO) specifically describes a type of genetic modification in which the DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) of microbes, plants, and animals is directly altered. GMOs resulting from recombinant DNA technology moving genes from one species to another are also called “transgenic.” Unlike genetically modified (GM) products in the pharmaceutical sector, such as insulin, GMO food and animal products have engendered public resistance and are highly controversial on account of mutually overlapping concerns of health, environment, economics, and ethics (Thomson, 2007). There are numerous controversies surrounding the use of GMOs, but there is a general consensus about the fact that they are very complex and that there should be more research before taking further decisions about their use (Murray, 2003).

The cultivation of genetically modified plants or transgenic plants can generate large profits but also lead to risks for agricultural and natural ecosystems. These risks, about which little is known, depends, among other things, that such plants are crossed spontaneously with wild relatives and produce hybrids that are spreading in the environment.Thesis Statement

Genetically Modified Plants should continue to be planted as crops and should be used for the production of human foods and medicines.


The great advance in genetics came in 1953, with the discovery of the DNA molecule by James D. Crick (1928-) and Francis Watson (1916-2004). The secret of life is in the DNA, and especially in the genes on the chromosomes. Genes is attached to the DNA double helix. Genes are codes that process the information to manufacture proteins. To synthesize a protein, a complementary RNA molecule is produced. Its sequence orders a specific amino acid sequence of the protein (Murray, 2003). As an understanding of the DNA molecule advanced, it became apparent that genes contain genetic information that directs the biochemistry of the human body and all other life. In the case of the human genome, there are 23,000 genes on the chromosomes of the human genetic code. Between 1990 and 2003, the human genome was mapped. Since then, many other life-forms—both animal and plant—have been mapped. This information has been used to create genetically modified (GM) foods or breeds of animals.Genetically Modified Products

First-generation GM Plants enable producers to reduce production costs and more easily control disease, insects, and pests. These plants are more or less similar or “substantial equivalent” to non-GM counterparts when it comes to appearance, taste, and nutrition value. The second-generation GM Plants, also called value-enhanced crops, focus on consumer-oriented benefits like enhanced nutritional quality. Third-generation GM crops include those that are altered to produce pharmaceuticals, vaccines, or biologics (Murray, 2003).

The first GM crop to appear in the market was Flavr Savr™ tomatoes, with slower ripping and longer shelf life. Roundup Ready soybean and corn were introduced in 1996 and 1998, respectively. Designed by Monsanto, Roundup has an herbicide called glyphosate as an active ingredient. Roundup can be sprayed on GM soy and corn cultivation to kill the weeds without damaging the actual ...
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