Since the beginning of the human race, we have been looking. We have been looking for ways to make our lives healthier, more comfortable, and happier. In the beginning it was simple rocks, plants, and fires. As our technology advanced so did the comfort of our lives. The wheel, the cure to the plaque, and who can forget the remote control, were all tools that made it possible to improve the quality of life. What tool lies ahead in the future to promote our well being and happiness? Genetic engineering is that tool. Every living thing is made up of genes, and with the capability of altering these genes, the possibilities are endless.
Everything from better quality produce to the prevention of cancer is a possibility with genetic engineering, and scientists are just now beginning to understand the complex gene patterns. If you can imagine a world free of diabetes, or male pattern baldness, and genetics has a major role. Genetic engineers might someday have the capabilities to remove these genes or even clone wanted genes, and in the end allowing us to live the healthy, comfortable, happier lives we seek. The numbers of positive outcomes from genetic engineering are inconceivable. Genetic engineering will lead to healthier, more comfortable, and better lives.
Genetic engineering will improve every day produce and goods. For producers involved with living organisms as their products, genes play a major role in the quality of their products and amount of profit. If a farmer’s cows are not as lean, or their corn is diseased, then the demand for their product is going to be less than the competition. That is where genetics comes in. It is possible, by altering certain genes, to create a leaner cow, or a disease resistant stalk of corn, and it is this fact that makes genetic engineering invaluable to the every day farmer.
If their cattle is leaner, or their chickens are engineered to lay two eggs instead of one, then there is going to be a greater profit earned by the farmers, and a better quality of product. In the near future there may be bacon that is relatively fat free, or a chicken breast with twice the meat. By selecting the wanted genes and removing the unwanted, the producer can improve it product that it sells to the consumer, and the spectrum is not just restricted to food. Softer cloths, sturdier wood, hardier trees and shrubs, and slower growing, greener grass are all possibilities.
These improved products will impact everyone, and will be everywhere. The impact is hazy, but the effect is clear; they will improve not only the profit of the producer, but also the lives of the consumer. Genetic altering will be a powerful tool against disease, and disabilities. Every year millions of people die from a variety of diseases and disabilities that are passed down by genes. Cancer is one example of a disease that has been linked to genes and heredity. Many patients have a family history involving some type of cancer in the past.
With the introduction of genetic engineering, there is a good chance that scientists will be able to locate genes that are prone to cancer and alter them so that the chance of getting cancer is greatly reduced. Cancer is not the only disease that this could be applied to either. Almost any disease, disorder, or disability has a future in genetic engineering. Another example is Down’s syndrome, a syndrome that is passed down through generations by a mutated gene, and causes mental impairment. Imagine if someday that mutated gene could be removed from a family’s future, allowing their kids to lead normal lives.
There is no doubt that it would improve the quality of life for these kids who, then, would be normal healthy children. Just the same, blindness, diabetes, dwarfism, heart valve deformities, Alzheimer’s and many more conditions can be avoided or even eliminated by the use of genetic engineering. The uses of genetic altering in the medical field are exciting as well as numerous, and it will no doubt change the way we look at our health and the health of our children. Cloning, also, has great potential in improving the lives of people.
It has potential, not only on the cellular level, but also on the tissue and organism level. The genetic engineering of cattle would be a stepping stone to a better, leaner beef. However once the leanest cow is produced then cloning can be introduced to produce the same lean and profitable cow over and over again. The same process could be applied to the cells of tissues. The future prosthetics might just be cultured in a lab from the tissue of the original limb, and re-attached to the patient for a perfect and normal arm or leg.
This technology would improve the lifestyle of the patient more greatly than the simple silicon and metal prosthetics of today. Cloning could also be applied to the reproduction of vaccines or cures to diseases. If one person was to beat, or live through, a disease that is normally fatal, then scientist could find the gene that enabled him or her to do so, clone it, and create a vaccine or cure for other people with that disease. This technology is still out of reach for right now, but scientists are rapidly approaching it, as seen in the cloning of sheep.
The cloning of vaccines and limbs is still in the future, but someday it will be a reality, and that reality will see achievements that will help people in areas that had been hopeless before. There are every day problems that could be solved with genetic engineering. It is amazing when you look at the possible potential of gene altering in common everyday life. In American, a larger percent of the population is obese than in any other country, and the health risks that accompany obesity are serious; including high blood pressure, heart attack, depression, and many other serious issues.
Lifestyles of fatty foods and not enough exercise put us at the top of the risk charts. Or is it the Twinkies fault? Even with this lifestyle, our weight is still mainly dependent upon one main factor, our metabolism, or the speed at which our bodies naturally burn off calories and fat. So what makes a slimmer persons metabolism faster, and an obese persons metabolism slower? Well, exercise for one, speeds up metabolism, but a much bigger determinate is genes. The genes that ancestors pass down determines how fast your body will naturally burn off the energy that it is fed.
That is where the potential is. If scientist locate the gene for metabolism control then the possibility for leaner, healthier people can be realized. If obesity is controlled then so will the health risks that come along with it. But what else could be controlled by genes? Well, almost any physical trait is controlled by genes, and could also be altered. The embarrassment of male pattern baldness could be a thing of the past, the painful experience of wisdom teeth could be avoided as well as numerous others.
If there is a history of any unwanted trait then there is a very good possibility that genetic engineering can fix it. These cosmetic changes may seem minor, but for many people they are problems, and eliminating them would greatly improve their self-perception and the way they live. The altering of genes will contribute a major part in the well being and happiness of people in the future. Genetic engineering is an awesome technological power that will be of great importance to the common every day person. It will improve, prevent, and eliminate aspects of our lives to the degree of inconceivability.
Everything from products to health will be improved by altering genes, resulting in less disease, healthier people, better food, and easier lives. We still do not realize the full potential of genetic engineering and we are just starting to recognize the possibilities. With genetic engineering the future will be a great and exciting time, one where the next Mohammed Ali will not have Parkinson’s Disease and clones of Evander Holyfield’s ears will always be at ring side. Genetic engineering will change the world, people, and the lives of the people for the better. The possibilities have no limit.