Zbigniew Ochocki, Andrzej Stańczak

Organizmy genetycznie zmodyfikowane (GMO) - żywnośź i leki przyszłości? Część II

Genetically modified organisms (GMO) - food and drugs of the future- Part 1 and 2. Although biotechnology and genetic modification commonly are used interchangeably, GMO is a special set of technologies that alter the genetic makeup of such living organisms as animals, plants, or bacteria. When DNA with a known structure is used by a cell to make a protein, the composition of the resulting protein is known with exact precision. It is because of this precision that scientists were able to make a copy of DNA that served as the blueprint for human insulin. Manipulation of the genes of plants that we eat may sound scary but genes have not been all that mysterious since scientists unraveled their secrets. A gene, made of DNA, provides cells with instructions for making a specific protein. Biotechnology, a more general term, refers to using living organisms or their components, such as enzymes, to make products that include wine, cheese, beer, and yogurt. Combining genes from different organisms is known as recombinant DNA technology, and the resulting organism is said to be "genetically modified", "genetically engineered", or transgenic.GMO products include medicines and vaccines, foods and food ingredients, feeds, and fibers. Technologies for genetically modifying foods offer dramatic promise for meeting some areas of greatest challenge for the 21st century. Like all new technologies, they also poses some risks, both known and unknown. Controversies surrounding GMO foods and crops commonly focus on human and environmental safety, labeling and consumer choice, intellectual property rights, ethics, food security, poverty reduction, and environmental conservation. It is fortunate that advances can be expected to have an even greater impact on productivity because the worldis population continues to increase with no increase in land to grow food. Advances in biotechnology provide the best hope that enough food can be produced to feed an ever-expanding population. If the use of molecular biology is done with as much care as it has been up until now, our food supply should remain abundant and safe long into the future. Genetically modified foods have received a lot of bad publicity. Critics say the altered foods may be unsafe. While there are many issues surrounding genetically modified foods, safety and nutrition are not among them. These foods are as safe and nutritious as their conventional counterparts.