Archive for April, 2010

Genetic Engineering

It may seem like science fiction but genetic engineering is already a reality in the world of foods. You have potatoes that grow larger, green chillies that do not curl and grapes which have no seeds. This is not the natural way that these foods grow. These modifications have been made to their genetic material and now they have become “improved” versions of the parent plant.

Just how this science experiment will progress is any ones guess. There is a major portion of the population which feels that genetic engineering of plants to help fight global hunger is a good thing. However the same people find it unacceptable to use genetic engineering processes on human beings to cure cancer or other potentially fatal diseases. That is why the objection to stem cell research.

The consensus is that while it is okay to tinker with plants and animals, it is not right for scientists to play God with humans. Even though the world is interested in the cloned sheep Dolly, it is not interested in seeing a cloned human being. The thought is scary, alien and meets with a lot of opposition from religious sects.

Yet it is not possible to halt the progress of science and technology. It is just a matter of time before the governments of the world allow genetic engineering on human beings. Maybe you could be a part of the science experiment which brings to life a cloned human being.

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The Human Genome

The Genome Project took millions of dollars and almost a decade to uncover the secrets of the human genetic material known as the DNA. It was an exciting race between a private company and a set of public researchers. Each team trying to compete the gene sequencing before the other could.

This blueprint of a human being is now available at a far less cost of just about $5000. It is used to diagnose the presence of any genetic mutations which could cause diseases later in life. It is also used to see if specific strains of pathogens may be fought with specific drugs and medication.

While the world expected great things from the Genome Project, its full potential is yet to be exploited. Part of the reason for this is the sheer volume of data involved. There is so much to be studied and then made sense of. Not to mention put to practical use.

All this takes time and maybe you can look forward to an exciting career as a gene picker! Your science projects can reflect the bio diversity of the genetic world. You may even discover some hidden trait and cause a real difference to the treatment of a particular disease. Get cracking on that science project on the genome.

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Design your own Baby

Blue eyes? Curly hair? Dimpled Chin? What are the exact features that you want in your baby? I am not talking about a computer game to raise a virtual baby here. This is actual stuff.  Now thanks to DNA mapping you may be able to choose the exact type of child that is born.

Of course this is a bit in the future, but yes you can tell if the unborn child in the mother’s womb is suffering from any genetic disease. What do you credit this to? It would have to be to genetics. The study of genetics revolves around the traits that the chromosomes give you as a human being.

This is why some one has a nose as long as their father, or has brown hair like their mother. Even the blood group is genetically determined. Your genes can predict a lot about you. This information can come in handy when you are ill and need to be treated in a special way.

Some cancer tumors affect different people in different ways. So the medication has to be different for them as well. Research can help determine what kind of tumors should be treated in which manner to be effectively eliminated. There are enough on going science projects on the subject. Check them out if you are interested.

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Made to order medication

There has been considerable progress made after the human DNA blueprint was untangled in making medication.  Now that the genes and their mutations are known, making specific medication to target that mutation is easier. There are less clinical trials involved and the drugs take less time to devlop.

Scientists are now demystifying the genes that mutate to cause cancer. The science project is a large scale international one where each cancer will get mapped in 200 patients. Then the research will begin to see why the mutations occur on a molecular level.

Once the mechanism of the cancer cells is understood, it will be used to form medication that can prevent the mutation or at least halt it once it begins. Such made to order medication will be really useful for cancer patients who have a short time to live and no time for trial and error in their medicine choice.

It is such ongoing science projects that contribute to the better health care opportunities that we as patients receive today. Sitting in a lab and mapping genes may not seem very Earth shaking, but it is useful and productive work which can save lives.  A small idea can become a large project and that is how you can contribute as well. Try out more science projects here.

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How your genes affect you

The study of Genetics has taken a huge leap forward after the Genome Project. The massive and expensive Genome project was undertaken to map all the DNA present in the human body. A sort of DNA Map for the humans that would help understand the diseases and their causes better.

The first Blueprint of the Human DNA was prepared about a decade ago. The information has now been used successfully to predict and treat a number of genetic diseases. Scientists are fairly excited about this project as they feel there are a number of things more that can still be achieved.

The benefits of the Genome project have been under criticism by funding sources who feel that the expense has not yet been justified. Yet this path breaking science project is still in its infancy. There is a whole of lot information which has not been processed yet.

The sheer volume of information has made progress slow, yet there have been some startling findings that have come to light thanks to the intensive project. It is also possible to get your own DNA blueprint at a relatively low cost of about five thousand dollars today.

Compare that to the billions of dollars that the first DNA blueprint took to make, it is an achievement of great importance. People can get screened for genetic illnesses and have the medical treatment done as a preventive measure. Check out more ideas for interesting science projects here.

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Using a Science Fair Project Kit

Why does it make sense to use a science fair project kit? In most cases parents do not have either the time or the expertise to help high school kids with their science fair projects. So the only guidance that is coming in is from the science teacher at school. However no teacher has the time to ensure individual attention to all the students in the class.

So what does the student do then? He will research what he can in the school library and then get on to the internet.The data available is a great deal, but to be able to assimilate and use it, he will need help. Some times too much information can result in no action being taken. The student is literally drowning in information overload.

So what’s the solution to this problem? A Science Fair Project Kit. These kits are designed to help the student make a specific science fair project. It includes all the material that may be required to assemble the project, the instructions to make the project and the explanation of why and how it works. Ideal for a student looking for a quick project.

There is no need to think of the details which have all been worked out for you. All you do is choose what project you want to do. Then buy the science fair project kit and just build it. As easy as that. May be that’s why our science kits are so popular. Check them out if you are stuck for ideas.

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