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Genetic modification introducing new/excluding existing genes (mono- and polygenic traits)

The term “genetic modification” in general would mean any change in hereditary traits, but by legal documents it is understood as a synonym for transgenosis called also recombinant DNA technique or genetic engineering. It consists in direct adjustment of hereditary record carrier, mostly DNA but in certain viruses might be also RNA. The part of organism´s DNA chain is removed or in most cases new piece is added. By the removal the function of the particular gene is abolished. The introduced part, called insert, carries one or several genes usually isolated from other organisms and is prepared in such a way that the genes are expressed, i.e., their products are synthesised by the modified organism and new trait occurs. Monogenic traits are introduced most easily. Polygenic traits depends on exact tuning of several gene cooperation.

From practical reasons helper genes are used for easy selection of modified cells and their identification. The new genes are included in the genome and transferred to the progeny. Helper genes may but need not be transferred with them. The product of genetic modification is by most documents called Genetically Modified Organism (GMO), in the protocol to CBD (Convention on Biological Diversity) known as the Cartagena Protocol Living Modified Organism (LMO). Genetic modification is a new technique, therefore it is regulated in most countries to avoid unexpected consequences. Based on accumulating experience rules for effective and safe use has been developed.

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