Why Did DNA Technology Lead to More Use of Cladistics?
DNA technology is a series of procedures that join together DNA segments from different sources to create recombinant DNA. Once recombinant DNA is introduced into a host organism it can multiply and express the manufactured proteins under optimal conditions. This is known as genetic engineering and it allows for the development of new pharmaceutical products like insulin, which is obtained from cells found in pancreas of pigs and cows. In this way recombinant DNA technology has helped to reduce the cost of insulin and other pharmaceuticals.
One of the most important applications of recombinant DNA technology is gene therapy, a medical process which involves replacing a defective gene with a normal gene. This is a promising treatment for many diseases such as single gene disorders, cancers, and AIDS. However, it is still in the research stage and is associated with a number of risks including insertional mutations.
Molecular DNA sequencing has also become commonplace. This technique involves the fragmentation of DNA, followed by a sequencing of the small fragments that are then assembled into longer sequences. DNA sequencing can be used to identify individual organisms as well as to construct phylogenetic trees.
The emergence of DNA technology has led to the development of a number of new methods of inferring evolutionary relationships. These techniques often involve the use of cladograms, which depict evolutionary trees based on molecular, morphological, or ethological data. However, it should be remembered that a cladogram is a hypothetical evolutionary tree. Because of this, the resulting phylogenetic relationships may not be accurate. Additionally, cladograms are often based on assumptions such as that a group of organisms sharing a significant character state have a common ancestor.