Medical Biotechnology: Advancement and Ethics

What is Medical Biotechnology?

Medical biotechnology is a branch of medicine that uses living cells and cellular materials to conduct research and then manufacture pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. These products help in the treatment and prevention of illnesses. From the Ebola vaccine to the mapping of human DNA and its impact on agriculture, medical biotechnology is making great strides, helping millions of people.

Some of the more recent applications of biological technology include work in genetic testing, drug treatments, and artificial tissue growth. With the many advances in medical biotechnology, new concerns arise. From finance to ethics, there are many things to determine and regulate concerning this fast-paced industry. Read more about the many technical developments in biology and concerns about them.

Major advances in medical biotechnology

From cancer research to advances in agriculture, medical biotechnology has promising technological growth with the potential to help many people.

CRISPR

CRISPR or CRISPR-Cas9 technology uses a protein called Cas9, which acts as a molecular shear and can cut DNA. CRISPRs are specialized pieces of DNA and are used in medical biotechnology as a tool to modify genomes. It allows scientists to alter DNA and alter gene functions, often called genetic engineering. There are many applications, such as correcting genetic defects, treating disease, preventing the spread of disease, improving crops, and much more. But the science of genome modification has many ethical concerns. From the ability to mutate genes and from the unknown genetic mutation around, CRISPR is a controversial area of biomedical science. Some new research shows that CRISPR technology can cause tumors and cancer with DNA controls that are not controlled or accurate. Obviously, the pharmaceutical companies and other scientific organizations that develop and use the CRISPR technology are trying to alleviate the concerns and problems, so the reality of the technology’s pros and cons is somewhat unknown.

Tissue nano transfection

The new science can heal people with a touch. Does this sound too good to be true? It is not. Tissue nano transfection works by injecting the genetic code into skin cells, which converts them into other types of cells needed to treat diseases. In some laboratory tests, a pinch of TNT completely repaired the injured mice’s bones within a few weeks, turning skin cells into vascular cells. It is said that this biotechnology can act on other types of tissue besides the skin. The potential for this type of gene therapy is enormous, from helping car crash victims to active soldiers. Medical biotechnology has made these advances possible, and ongoing research and testing will only help improve and apply this technology in hospitals and medical centers.

Recombinant DNA Technology

Recombinant DNA technology combines DNA molecules from two different species and then places the new DNA into a host organism. This host organism will produce new genetic combinations for medicine, agriculture, and industry. There are many examples of recombinant DNA technology, from biopharmaceuticals and diagnostics to energy applications such as biofuels, to agricultural biotechnology with modified fruits and vegetables. Genetically modified products can outperform normal drugs or products. Recombinant agriculture is more resistant to pests or the elements; Recombinant drugs, such as insulin, may work better with bodies, and so on. Because of the many benefits that recombinant DNA brings to a variety of products, researchers are optimistic about the future it holds, both in life sciences and in other industries.

Genetic Testing 

Genetics and ancestry sets are popular today and are useful for more than just helping people understand their genetics and heritage. New studies show that saliva samples can test for things like breast cancer, looking for genetic mutations. Certain races are also more likely to inherit certain human mutations or diseases, and knowing which races make up your genetic material can help you prepare. While 23andMe test results should not be a reason to make treatment decisions, it is important to understand your ancestry and how it can affect your health. 23andMe is also authorized to test for a variety of diseases, including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

HPV Vaccine

You’ve probably heard about the human papillomavirus (HPV) and how it’s linked to cervical cancer, the second deadliest cancer for women, after breast cancer. Statistics show that cervical cancer kills 275,000 women every year, which is why an HPV vaccine is so important. The good news is that there are now two vaccines on the market – Cervarix and Gardasil – that have been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for use in women ages 9 to 26.

Stem cell research

Biotechnology plays an important role in supporting stem cell research, which supports the study of stem cell culture in a laboratory or in vitro environment. It can help in situations where patients are suffering from an illness or condition, where stem cell implants can help restore their vitality and give them new life. How does it work? Because stem cells can repeatedly divide and convert to other cell types in the body, biotechnologists can learn to work with their unique profiles to stimulate the growth of specific cell types. While research is ongoing, the findings are hopeful for the future of this unique medical approach.

Role of healthcare leaders in the biotechnology sector

As the biotechnology industry is constantly evolving and changing, strong leadership is needed to navigate these changes and support researchers in their work. This is where health managers come in. With their experience in operations management, these leaders can help streamline processes and meet the needs of multiple stakeholders, while their knowledge of data-driven decision-making can help researchers analyze the numbers associated with their work. An understanding of financial management can keep projects within budget, while experience in healthcare information technology is also a valuable resource for the biotechnology world. And with marketing skills, healthcare leaders can also play an important role in communicating discoveries, both internally and externally.

Medical biotechnology is a growing field and, along with its potential to save lives, it raises ethical questions. As the field continues to grow, people from all types of industries will be forced to make decisions to help regulate this field.

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