Human Manipulation Of Genetic Transfer Essay

2837 WordsAug 19, 201412 Pages
Introduction Human manipulations of genetic transfer are methods to change the base sequence of DNA. Changing the base sequence of DNA can have many applications in the health industry-i.e. controlling the disease Tay-Sachs, which causes neurological deterioration. About Tay-Sachs Tay-Sachs is caused by a mutation in the allele that codes for a very specific enzyme (hexosaminidase-A). The mutations result in a faulty enzyme that cannot carry out its function being produced. The mutated allele for Tay-Sachs is unusually frequent amongst the Ashkenazi Jewish population (1 person in 27 are carriers, compared to 1 person in 250 in the general population). Tay-Sachs is a recessive condition, meaning that offspring must receive a copy of the mutated allele from each parent in order to inherit it. Hexosaminidase-A catalyses the biodegradation of gangliosidoses. Without the enzyme catalysing the biodegradation, the gangliosidoses are only partly metabolised. They accrue in the brain, causing damage to the nervous tissue. “Deterioration of the central nervous system becomes apparent at about six months of age. Symptoms include loss of coordination, blindness, deafness, seizures, and severe mental retardation. The average life expectancy is three to five years.” (http://www.jewishgeneticdiseases.org/diseases/tay-sachs-disease/, 14/08/2014) Tay-Sachs has no current treatment. Selective Breeding A method that humans use to control Tay-Sachs is selective breeding. Selective breeding
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