Understanding Biotechnology: A Gift of Nature
The IUP Journal of Biotechnology, Vol. VI, No. 1, March 2012, pp. 57-68
Posted: 29 Sep 2012
Date Written: 2012
Biotechnology is a collective term for a group of technologies that use biological matter or processes to generate new and useful products and processes. Biotechnology is a key technology for the new millennium. It has an immense range of applications in agriculture, medicine, food processing, environmental protection, mining, and even nanoelectronics. On the other hand, the potential for altering the genetic structure and characteristics of living organisms, including humans, plants and animals, has resulted in many concerns about safety and ethical implications of the new technologies. When assessing the Indian legal framework for biotechnology, attention must be paid both to international compromises and internal norms. The majority of the agencies that enact rules and control activities in the biotechnology field pertain to four ministries of the central government. Biotechnology can be approached from different angles. Some describe it as “a field of technological activity, in which biochemical, genetic, microbiological and engineering techniques are combined for the pursuit of technical and applied aspects of research into biological materials and, in particular, into biological processing”, such as the application of science and technology to living organisms, as well as parts, products and models thereof, to alter living or non-living materials for production of knowledge, goods and services. Research in this paper asks: what have been the impacts of GM crops on poverty and food security? Effective regulation is an essential component of any innovation process. Despite much international attention given to GM crops and food products, genetic engineering in health has been the main focus for modern biotechnology for the past several decades.
Keywords: Food processing, Biochemical, GM crops, Genetic engineering
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