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Genetically Modified Organisms


A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. Organisms that have been genetically modified include micro-organisms such as bacteria and yeast, insects, plants, fish, and mammals. GMOs are the source of genetically modified foods, and are also widely used in scientific research and to produce goods other than food

A short GMO video gNLA

Connection to Genetics
Genetically modified organisms
The modifying of genes using horizontal gene transfer, viruses, bacteria, or a gene gun.

Genetic modification involves the insertion or deletion of genes. Usually the genes that are inserted come from a different species, which is a form of horizontal gene transfer. This can occur when exogenous DNA penetrates the cell membrane for any reason. To do this artificially may require attaching the genes to a virus or just physically inserting the extra DNA into the nucleus of the intended host with a very small syringe, or with very small particles fired from a gene gun.

How GMOs are Made

For a GMO to be made, three components are needed: 1. Gene you want transferred 2. Organism to obtain the gene 3. A vector to get the gene into the organism

(How Are GMOs Made?)

Steps to Make a GMO

Gene needs to be cut out from its original organism Gene is put into a vector so it can be put into the new organism The genes enter into the organisms genome where Genome will replicate and the created cells from gene will enter into the DNA
(How Are GMOs Made?)

Technology used in GMOs

Genetic Modification has been growing recently due to the advancement of modern technology. Without all our technological additions, GMOs would likely be less common than they are today.

("Drafting a Policy Statement: GMO Technology.)

GMOs today are identified by most people as being associated with agricultural crops. They are being used to: Increase crop yield Increase profit Increase health of environment due to less pesticides being used
("Drafting a Policy Statement: GMO Technology.)

Methods to Genetically Modify an Organism

Gene Insertion Insertion through Vectors

("Drafting a Policy Statement: GMO Technology.)

Gene Insertion
Gene Insertion is simply the inserting of a gene into an organism that it did not already have. Gene Insertion can be done by: Transformation Injection Viral Infection Bombardment with DNA ("Drafting a Policy Statement: GMO Technology.)

Insertion through Vectors

A bacteria that causes tumors is inserted into a plant containing DNA that will cause the tumor to grow excessively. As it grows, the vector inside spreads throughout the plant. The DNA containing the desired trait will expand giving the plant the necessary DNA.
("Drafting a Policy Statement: GMO Technology.)


Testing Tobacco and Tomatoes

Calgene Tomatoes


"How Are GMOs Made?" HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology. HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2013. <>.

Boucher, Danielle, Ben Freeman, Mathew Pritchard, Sam Nalle, Sam Rayner, Dianna Seng, and Genetics Professor Montgomery. "Drafting a Policy Statement: GMO Technology.", 6 May 2003. Web. 04 Mar. 2013. <>.