Introduction of Biotechnology and Future Options

This article is about the question that why biotechnology has been introduced in class 12th biology syllabus

Created On: Nov 8, 2013 15:05 IST
Modified On: Nov 8, 2013 18:10 IST

So many questions are comming while a student starts the chapter or unit of biotechnology in class 12th like:

what are the moto to study the biotechnology at class 12th?

what are the future options?

why it is in syllabus?

how it will be useful in future?

and many more..

lets start with the basic concepts which will be helpful for the students


below are the three main steps involved in the principle of biotechnology

i. Principle of biotechnology
ii. Tools of recombinant DNA technology
iii. Processes of recombinant DNA technology

I. Principle of biotechnology
The important techniques that enable the birth of modern biotechnology are:

Genetic engineering:
it is nothing but the popular name of recombinant DNA technology Manipulation of DNA is involved in the rDNA Technology and that is the reason to called as genetic engineering

Aseptic environment
To provide the sterile environment(microbial contamination free environment) to enable the growth of only desired microbes in large quantities for the manufacturing of biotechnological products like antibiotics, vaccines, enzymes etc,.

II. Tools of recombinant DNA technology
The various biological tools used to bring about genetic manipulations in genetic engineering like:

  1. Restriction enzymes
  2. Ligases
  3. Plasmids And
  4. Host organism like E.coli

1. Restriction enzymes

5'-- GAATTC --3'
3'-- CTTAAG --5'

After this DNA sequence is cut, it might look something like this:

5'-- G AATTC --3'
3'-- C TTAAG --5'

2. Ligases
Ligase is an enzyme used in genetic engineering for "gluing". It fills the gap and completes restoration process to form intact DNA circles.

3. Plasmid
These are small extra chromosomal double stranded circular DNA molecules present in bacteria which have the capacity to self replicate or A segment of DNA independent of the chromosomes and capable of replication, occurring in bacteria and yeast: used in recombinant DNA procedures to transfer genetic material from one cell to another.

4. Host organism
The host cells are used for the amplification of gene of interest.   E.coli is the most preferred host because

  1. Molecular biology of this bacterium is well understood
  2. It can grow easily on culture media
  3. Multiply fast, once in 20 minutes
  4. Generally non pathogenic(except some exceptions)
  5. Usually sensitive to antibiotic

III. Processes of recombinant DNA technology

The recombinant DNA technique is carried out in the following steps

  1. Isolation of the genetic material
  2. Cutting of DNA at specific location
  3. Amplification of gene of interest using PCR
  4. Insertion of rDNA into the host cell/ organism
  5. Obtaining the foreign gene product

1. Isolation of the genetic material(DNA)

  • Plant cell wall……cellulase and proteases
  • Fungal cell wall…..chitinase
  • Bacteria and animals cell wall…..Lysozyme But the obtained DNA is not pure and mixed with RNA, protein and other debris
  • Ribonuclases is used to remove the RNA
  • Proteases is used to remove protein
  • Other debris are removed by chilled ethanol and purified dna get precipitated out as thread

2. Cutting of DNA at specific location

  • Cutting out of DNA at specific place by use of restriction enzyme
  • A vector having the gene of our interest is called recombinant DNA / chimeric DNA or mosaic DNA.

3. Amplification of gene of interest using  PCR

  • PCR is a power full procedure which can produce million fold copies of a selected DNA sequence in a genome
  • It is also used to clone a given DNA sequence in vitro without using living cells

       1. Denaturation:
PCR mixture is prepared is heated to 95 degree to denature the DNA into single stranded molecules

       PCR mixture=(primers+targeted DNA+Taq polymarase + 4 dna nucleotides

      2. Renaturation/ Annealing

Mixture is cooled at 55 degree allow the primers to anneal their complementary sequences


  • Mixture is again heated to 75 degree this optimum temp.Taq DNA polynarase begins to extend the primers by adding nucleotides
  • During PCR the product formed in each cycle serves as a template for the next reaction cycle which lead into chain reaction

4. Insertion of rDNA into the host cell/ organism
The E.coli is treated with cold CaCl2 to open the pores of cell wall, to facilate the entry of recombinant DNA (transformation).

5. Obtaining the foreign gene product
Birth of Dolly , Golden Rice, bt cotton, gene therapy etc

Genetically Modified Animal-Dolly(5 July-1996): get an idea that how this technique is applied in the process of cloning

Modern Biotechnology

Molecular Biology

     - microbiology

     - biochemistry

     - cell biology

Molecular Genetics

Genetic Engineering: Moving a gene from one organism to another

                -  chemical engineering

                -  biomanufacturing

Biotechnology Industry

As of December 2003:

  • There are 1,473 companies & 198,300 employees
  • 300 Biotechnology drug products and vaccines are in clinical trials
  • Biotechnology foods include papaya, corn and soybeans
  • Environmental biotechnology used to clean up hazardous spills
  • Forensic medicine is used for identification by DNA Fingerprinting
  • Regulated by the FDA
  • More than 323 million people worldwide have been helped by Biotech

Biotechnology Applications in  Health and Medicine

  • Protein Pharmaceuticals
  • Vaccines & Therapeutic Agents
  • Diagnostics: Protein or DNA Based
  • Gene Therapy

Biotech Products in Use


Gene Therapy

  • Insertion of a new “healthy” gene into the organism to provide needed (usually) proteins, hormones etc.
  • Gene is carried into the host by a viral vector that has been disabled
  • Can provide relief for many genetic diseases


Future Options:

Now with the advancement of technology, so many options are available for your graduation study like

B.Tech Biotechnology

B.Tech Bioinformatics

B.Tech Biomedical Engineering




And many more...

So it is the main reason that why biotechnology get introduced in class 12th level

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