DNA sequencing is the process of determining the sequence of nucleotide bases (assembly of A's, T's, C's and G's) within a DNA molecule. This is done either by sequencing a single DNA fragment at a time, or by sequencing a large collection of DNA fragments that are then assembled into one long sequence.
Recombinant DNA Technology
Recombinant DNA technology allows scientists to alter the genetic material of living organisms by insertion of genes from a variety of sources, including viruses and bacteria. The technique is useful in the study of gene structure and function, in genetic engineering to create new biological products, and in medicine and pharmacology.
For example, recombinant DNA technology can be used to make human insulin. Today, recombinant insulin is manufactured by a pharmaceutical company called Eli Lilly and Company. It is similar to the natural insulin produced by our bodies but it is much more potent and does not cause a dangerous buildup of glucose in the blood.
Another important application of recombinant DNA is the production of vaccines against disease. Vaccines can be made from recombinant viral or bacterial DNA, or they can be created by chemical synthesis of specific DNA sequences that do not occur naturally.
Recombinant DNA technology is a powerful tool for answering a broad range of scientific questions, such as how cells divide, why some cells become cancerous and others do not, and what controls the expression of certain genes during development. It also allows scientists to engineer aEURoeknockoutaEUR mice, in which one or more genes are deleted, to explore their function.