Biotechnology is branch of biology which uses natural biological processes to create a technology that helps human being in different ways. It is used in environmental, pharmaceutical and industrial areas and improves people’s need in their daily life. Science based technologies like biochemistry, recombinant DNA techniques, microbiology, molecular and cellular biology are types of biotechnology.
Modern biotechnology provides advance products and technologies which help us to fight devastating and rare diseases and reduce our environmental footprint. It also helps to feed the hungry, use less and cleaner energy, and have safer and more efficient industrial manufacturing processes. According to a report, agricultural biotechnology is being used by more than 14 million famers around the world to increase production, prevent damage from pests and insects and reduce the impacts of farming on our environment.
In some developing countries, the crop production has increased seven to ten fold with the help of agricultural biotechnology. This increased production is far beyond the production of traditional agriculture methods. In 2007, around 12 million farmers in 23 countries planted 252 acres of biotech crops mainly cotton, soybeans and canola. These new varieties of soybeans will produce 50% more iron availability from the diet which will make a real difference in lives of anemia patients.
It has helped the mankind to improve the nutritional content of food supply. Vital minerals and vitamins can be produced in croplands and thus diseases which are related to lack of nutrients are reduced. It also increase the crops production with increased nutrients so that people consume less and get the same nutritional values. In this way, problems of lack of food can be minimized. Thus it can improve health and reduce hunger at the same time. For example, the researchers at University of Hawaii, produced two varieties of papaya which are resistant to papaya ringspot virus.
Biotechnology helps the farmers to produce foods which may not be possible under normal conditions. With the help of research of biotechnology, it is not possible to grow crops even in the desert. Naturally pest resistant crops can now be cultivated. Biotechnology utilizes minimum land of our planet with increased yield. Thus overall it creates flexibility within our food chain.
The field of biotechnology has helped us to do research on human genome and it has allowed us to know more about rare genetic diseases and some type of cancers and it has produced effective treatment of these diseases. Biotechnology has explored the reasons of certain birth defects in mankind which makes possible to extend average human lifespans. Thus if offers advanced medical opportunities.
Biotechnology is also used in the textile industry for the finishing of garments and fabrics. It produces biotech-derived cotton that is strong, warmer and has improved absorbency,
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