Genetically modified organism

genetically modified organismsGMOgenetically modifiedtransgenicGMOstransgenicsgenetically engineeredgenetic modificationtransgenic micegenetically modified foods
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is any organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.wikipedia
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Genetic engineering techniques

genetically modifiedtechnologiesvariety of techniques
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is any organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.
There are a number of steps that are followed before a genetically modified organism (GMO) is created.

Genetic engineering

genetically engineeredgenetically modifiedgenetic modification
The exact definition of a genetically modified organism and what constitutes genetic engineering varies, with the most common being an organism altered in a way that "does not occur naturally by mating and/or natural recombination".
An organism that is generated through genetic engineering is considered to be genetically modified (GM) and the resulting entity is a genetically modified organism (GMO).

Rudolf Jaenisch

Jaenisch, RudolfRudolf Jaensich
The first genetically modified animal, a mouse, was created in 1974 by Rudolf Jaenisch, and the first plant was produced in 1983.
He is a pioneer of transgenic science, in which an animal’s genetic makeup is altered.

Genetically modified fish

genetically modified
Genetically modified fish are used for scientific research, as pets and as a food source.
Genetically modified fish (GM fish) are organisms from the taxonomic clade which includes the classes Agnatha (jawless fish), Chondrichthyes (cartilaginous fish) and Osteichthyes (bony fish) whose genetic material (DNA) has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.


cisgenicintragenicproposed designation
Genes have been transferred within the same species, across species (creating transgenic organisms) and even across kingdoms.
A variety of classification schemes have been proposed that order genetically modified organisms based on the nature of introduced genotypical changes, rather than the process of genetic engineering.

Biological patent

gene patentpatentedgenetic patent
Other concerns are the objectivity and rigor of regulatory authorities, contamination of non-genetically modified food, control of the food supply, patenting of life and the use of intellectual property rights.
The scope and reach of biological patents vary among jurisdictions, and may include biological technology and products, genetically modified organisms and genetic material.

Genetically modified food

genetically modified foodsgenetically modifiedGM food
In 1994 the Flavr Savr tomato was released, the first commersialised genetically modified food.
Genetically modified microbial enzymes were the first application of genetically modified organisms in food production and were approved in 1988 by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

biosafety protocolCartagena ProtocolCartagena
The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety in 2000 used the synonym living modified organism (LMO) and defined it as "any living organism that possesses a novel combination of genetic material obtained through the use of modern biotechnology."
The Biosafety Protocol seeks to protect biological diversity from the potential risks posed by genetically modified organisms resulting from modern biotechnology.


Danio reriozebra fishzebra danio
The first genetically modified animal to be commercialised was the GloFish, a Zebra fish with a fluorescent gene added that allows it to glow in the dark under ultraviolet light.
It is also notable for its regenerative abilities, and has been modified by researchers to produce many transgenic strains.


However it took another eight years before transgenic mice were developed that passed the transgene to their offspring.
Transgenic or genetically modified organisms, be they bacteria, viruses or fungi, serve all kinds of research purposes.


Recent advancements using genome editing techniques, notably CRISPR, have made the production of GMO's much simpler.
CRISPR simplifies creation of animals for research that mimic disease or show what happens when a gene is knocked down or mutated.

European Commission

CommissionECthe European Commission
A narrower definition provided by the Food and Agriculture Organization, the World Health Organization and the European Commission says that the organisms must be altered in a way that does "not occur naturally by mating and/or natural recombination".
This means that pre-emptive regulation takes place if there is a credible hazard to the environment or human health: for example on tackling climate change and restricting genetically modified organisms.

Golden rice

vitamin A
Golden rice has been engineered with three genes that increase its nutritional value.
Greenpeace opposes the use of any patented genetically modified organisms in agriculture and opposes the cultivation of golden rice, claiming it will open the door to more widespread use of GMOs.

Ice-minus bacteria

ice-minus strain of ''P. syringaeice-minusice-minus strain
This led to the development of ice-minus bacteria, that have the ice-forming genes removed.
Field-testing of Frostban in 1987 was the first release of a genetically modified organism into the environment.


Genetically modified crops are genetically modified plants that are used in agriculture.
Genetically modified organisms are widely used, although they are banned in several countries.

Pharming (genetics)

pharmingmolecular farmingplant-made pharmaceuticals
Plants and plant cells have been genetically engineered for production of biopharmaceuticals in bioreactors, a process known as pharming.
Pharming, a portmanteau of "farming" and "pharmaceutical", refers to the use of genetic engineering to insert genes that code for useful pharmaceuticals into host animals or plants that would otherwise not express those genes, thus creating a genetically modified organism (GMO).

Recombinant DNA

recombinantrecombinant proteingene splicing
Modern biotechnology is further defined as "In vitro nucleic acid techniques, including recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and direct injection of nucleic acid into cells or organelles, or fusion of cells beyond the taxonomic family."
These concerns are discussed in the articles on genetically modified organisms and genetically modified food controversies.

Molecular biology

molecular biologistmolecularmolecular biologists
The simplest model organisms come from bacteria, with most of our early understanding of molecular biology coming from studying Escherichia coli.
These blots are still used for some applications, however, such as measuring transgene copy number in transgenic mice or in the engineering of gene knockout embryonic stem cell lines.

Homologous recombination

recombinationrecombinational repairhomolog recombination
Gene targeting techniques, which creates double-stranded breaks and takes advantage on the cells natural homologous recombination repair systems, have been developed to target insertion to exact locations.
Many methods for introducing DNA sequences into organisms to create recombinant DNA and genetically modified organisms use the process of homologous recombination.


Various advancements in genetics allowed humans to directly alter the DNA and therefore genes of organisms.
By binding ("ligating") fragments of DNA together from different sources, researchers can create recombinant DNA, the DNA often associated with genetically modified organisms.

Synthetic biology

synthetic lifesynthetic biologistsynthetic
They named it Synthia and it was the world's first synthetic life form.
With the exception of regulating DNA synthesis companies, however, the issues are not seen as new because they were raised during the earlier recombinant DNA and genetically modified organism (GMO) debates and extensive regulations of genetic engineering and pathogen research were in place in many jurisdictions.

Knockout mouse

knockout miceknockoutknock-out mice
Mice with genes removed (termed a knockout mouse) were created in 1989.
Genetically modified organism


genesnumber of genesgene sequence
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is any organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.
For multicellular organisms, typically the embryo is engineered which grows into the adult genetically modified organism.

Huntington's disease

HuntingtonHuntington’s diseaseHuntington's Chorea
Their first research target for these marmosets was Parkinson's disease, but they were also considering amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Huntington's disease.
In animals genetically modified to exhibit HD, several functions of HTT have been found.

Citrus greening disease

citrus greeninghuanglongbing
The virus was injected into orange trees to combat citrus greening disease that had reduced orange production by 70% since 2005.
No naturally immune citrus cultivars have been identified; however, creating genetically modified citrus may be a possible solution, but questions of its acceptability to consumers exist.