Gene Splicing: A Genetic Analysis

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Gene splicing is a complex practice that utilizes naturally occurring substances in order produce a stable recombinant DNA molecule. Endonucleases, also known as restriction enzymes, are responsible for splitting DNA strands (Gene Splicing). These enzymes are very specific, only cutting the DNA strand when it recognizes a specific sequence, producing distinct DNA fragments. These fragments have one end with a single strand, a "sticky end", that will form hydrogen bonds with a complementary, foreign DNA fragment's "sticky end" (Griffiths). DNA ligase, another enzyme, permanently joins the original DNA fragments with these foreign DNA fragments, creating Recombinant DNA (Gene Splicing). The foreign DNA fragments must be cut by the same type of restriction enzyme in order to join with an original, complimentary DNA fragment (Griffths). This process was first used with bacteria due the presence of plasmids: circular DNA strands that are independent of the cell's chromosomal DNA (Pray). Extracted plasmids can be genetically modified into recombinant plasmids and placed into bacterial cells, which reproduce at high rates. These altered plasmids are in each bacterial clone, creating a population of cells with the desired genetic material that can be used for human application. Gene Splicing has made the mass production of human proteins possible. Of the many proteins produced, human growth hormone is one of the most interesting examples. …show more content…

When HGH was extracted from cadavers, only children with severe growth hormone deficiencies associated with pituitary dwarfism were given doses of the rare protein (Wilkies). Today however, HGH is in large enough quantities to treat individuals with growth hormone deficiency, Noonan Syndrome, Turner Syndrome, idiopathic short stature, children born small for their gestational age, and adults with hormone deficiency

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