Biotechnology, Space Technology, Applications of Biotech, GSLV Programme

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Biotechnology

Biotechnology is a field of applied biology that involves the use of living organisms and bioprocesses in engineering, technology, medicine and other fields requiring bioproducts. It also includes genetic engineering as well as cell and tissue culture technologies

Some branches of biotechnology

  • Bioinformatics/Computational Biology

  • Blue Biotechnology

  • Green Biotechnology

  • Red Biotechnology

  • White Biotechnology

Applications of Biotech

Medicine

  • Pharmacogenomics

  • Pharmaceutical Products

  • Genetic Testing

  • Gene Therapy

  • Human Genome Project

  • Cloning

Agriculture

  • Crop yield

  • Reduced vulnerability of crops to environmental stresses

  • Increased nutritional qualities

  • Improved taste, texture or appearance of food

  • Reduced dependence on fertilizers, pesticides and other agrochemicals

  • Production of novel substances in crop plants

Industrial

  • Bioleaching

  • Production of beer and other food products

  • Bioremediation

  • Biological engineering

Gene Therapy

  • GT may be used for treating, or even curing, genetic and acquired diseases like cancer and AIDS by using normal genes to supplement or replace defective genes or to bolster a normal function such as immunity

  • Two ways of implementing gene therapy

    • Ex vivo

    • In vivo

Cloning

  • Cloning involves the removal of the nucleus from one cell and its placement in an unfertilized egg cell whose nucleus has either been deactivated or removed.

  • Two types of cloning

    • Reproductive Cloning

    • Therapeutic Cloning

Controversies on Biotech

  • Genetically altering reproductive cells

  • Ethical concerns in eugenics and human cloning

  • Free will via-a-vis genetic determinism

  • Effect on social institutions like family

Space Technology

GSLV Programme

  • Requires a cryogenic engine

  • A cryogenic engine is one that uses a cryogenic fuel or oxidiser, that is, its fuel or oxidiser (or both) is gases liquefied and stored at very low temperatures

Communication Technology

  • Telecom network grew by 40 pc during 2010 with addition of 216.13 million connections

  • In 2010 there were 706.7 million wireless connections making India the largest wireless network in the world

  • Significance

    • Connects people across the length and breadth of the country

    • Contributes significantly to India’s GDP

    • Has made transactions faster

  • 74 pc to 100 pc FDI is permitted for various telecom services

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