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The Human Genome Project

Uploaded by Admin on Jan 22, 1999

Does the Human Genome Project effect the moral standards of society? Can the information produced by it become a beneficial asset or a moral evil? For example, X chromosome markers can be used to identify ethnicity. A seemingly harmless collection of information from the Human Genome Project. But let's assume this information is used to explore ways to deny entry into countries, determine social class, or who gets preferential treatment. Whether or not this type of treatment is acceptable to a moral society remains to be seen. The major events of genetic history are important to understanding the Human Genome Project. Genetics is the study of the patterns of inheritance of specific traits. The basic beginnings of genetic history lay in the ancient techniques of selective breeding to yield special characteristics in later generations. This was and still is a form of genetic manipulation by "employing appropriate selection for physical and behavioral traits"(Gert, 93). Gregor Mendel, an Austrian monk, completed experiments on garden peas so as to establish the quantitative discipline of genetics. Mendel's work explained that the inheritance of traits can be stated by factors passed from one generation to the next; a gene. The complete set of genes for an organism is called it's genome. A genome creates traits that can be explained due to the inheritance of single or multiple genes affected by factors in the environment. Mendel also correctly stated that two copies of every factor exists and that one factor of inheritance could be dominate over another. The next major events of genetic history involved the discovery DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). DNA is a double helix of amino acids and proteins that are encode the blueprint for all living things. DNA was found to be packed into chromosomes, of which 23 pairs existed in each cell of the human body. DNA was also found to be made of nucleotide chains consisting of four amino acid bases known as Adenine, Cytosine, Thymine, and Guanine (A, C, T, and G). Any ordered pair of bases makes a sequence. Sequences are the instructions that produce molecules and proteins for cellular structure and biochemical functions. A marker is any location on a chromosome where inheritance can be identified and tracked. Markers can be expressed areas of genes (DNA) or some segment of DNA with no known coding function but an inheritance can still be traced. It is these markers that...

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Uploaded by:   Admin

Date:   01/22/1999

Category:   Science And Technology

Length:   7 pages (1,581 words)

Views:   1748

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