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Biotechnology
1. Which of the following is an example of gene splicing?
A.
B.
C.
D.
a segment of human DNA is inserted into the DNA sequence of a bacterium
a mutation that occurs during meiosis results in a chromosomal abnormality
a genetically identical copy of an entire organism is produced through cloning
two human chromosomes pair up during meiosis and exchange parts of their DNA
2. The diagram above shows the process of recombinant DNA technology.
According to this diagram, segments of DNA can be cut using ________.
A. vectors
B. enzymes
C. bacterial cells
D. plasmids
3. The first commercial application of genetic engineering was the use of bacteria to make insulin, a medicine
needed by diabetics. Before the use of genetically-engineered bacteria, insulin had to be harvested from the
pancreases of slaughtered animals.
How has genetic engineering most likely improved the lives of diabetics?
A.
B.
C.
D.
It has made the incidence of diabetes decrease.
It has made insulin cheaper and more readily available.
It has made the demand for insulin decrease.
It has made it easier for diabetics to inject themselves with insulin.
4. Scientists have genetically-engineered some strains of bacteria to consume toxins, such as oil, and to
excrete the toxins as harmless substances.
How might these bacteria most likely impact society?
A.
B.
C.
D.
They will cause people to become more careless about polluting the environment.
They will grow out of control and consume the world's oil supply.
They will enable people to easily clean up spilled pollutants in the environment.
They will cause more bacterial infections in people.
5. In the 1970s, many biotechnologists worked to develop a biodiesel that was an alternative to petroleum
diesel. The results of their research was a biodiesel fuel that can be burned by most regular diesel engines and
releases up to 50% less carbon emissions than petroleum diesel.
If the majority of diesel-burning vehicles in the United States begin using biodiesel, what would be the most
likely environmental impact?
A.
B.
C.
D.
There will be no environmental impact.
The amount of acid rain falling on the country will increase.
Air quality across the country will improve.
The amount of polluted runoff flowing into the ocean will decrease.
6. Technology Enhanced Questions are not available in Word format.
7. Every year millions of crops are lost due to pests. In recent times, however, scientists have learned that they
can insert a gene into the DNA of specific crops that gives them a higher pest-resistance than normal. This
technology allows farmers to have higher crop yields and increases the supply of valuable food sources.
This technology is an example of
A. DNA transcription.
B. gene splicing.
C. crossing over.
D. binary fission.
8. Genetic engineering is the process of manipulating genes for practical purposes. Today, scientists have
genetically engineered many types of organisms including crop plants.
Which of the following is a current benefit gained from genetically engineered crops?
A.
B.
C.
D.
Some animals develop allergies to the genetically engineered crops.
Some disease resistant fruits and vegetables are less flavorful.
Some genes can be transferred to wild plants in the area.
Some food staples, such as rice, contain more nutrients.
9. Recently, scientists have genetically engineered fruit crops to contain vaccines. How might these fruit crops
most likely benefit society?
A.
B.
C.
D.
They could make it cheaper and easier to administer vaccines.
They could encourage people to eat healthier food.
They could make fruit crops more productive than they were before.
They could help eradicate all infectious diseases in the world.
10. Today, genetically-engineered crops are becoming more common. Which of the following is a likely
possible negative impact of the use of genetically-engineered crops?
A.
B.
C.
D.
Crops that have been genetically engineered to resist disease would increase the use of pesticides.
Human DNA might experience recombinant mutations with the plant DNA.
Animals that consume genetically-engineered crops will no longer be able to reproduce.
Genetically-engineered genes can be transferred to wild plants in the area.
11. Many genetic disorders have mild, moderate, and severe disease forms that are identified by speed of
symptom progression. As disease features may worsen over several years, the severity of the disease cannot
always be determined in childhood.
Which of the following technological advances would help doctors determine whether an individual has the
most severe form of a disease in childhood?
A. the discovery of a specific gene mutation associated with the mild disease form
B. the discovery of a new biochemical test that identifies presence of the disease
C. the discovery of a similar genetic disease that occurs in a mild disease form
D. the discovery of a specific gene mutation associated with the severe disease form
12. Biotechnology is used in a variety of areas from agriculture to pharmaceuticals to fuels.
How is the use of biotechnology in agriculture beneficial to the environment?
A.
B.
C.
D.
Genetically altered crops require less pesticide.
Genetically altered crops are unable to reproduce.
Genetically altered crops are more delicious.
Genetically altered crops produce less carbon dioxide.
13. A vaccine is a substance that contains all or part of a noninfectious version of a disease-causing organism.
When the vaccine is administered to a person, the person's immune system attacks the noninfectious version
of the organism and learns to recognize its surface proteins. The next time the immune system comes in
contact with the same surface proteins, it has a defense already prepared in order to respond quickly to the
invading organism. In this way, a vaccine gives people immunity to the disease-causing organism.
Vaccines can be life-saving, but there have been a few cases of people catching a disease from the
administered vaccine.
How might genetically engineered organisms solve this problem?
Harmless organisms could be genetically engineered to have surface proteins from disease-causing
A. organisms.
B.
C.
D.
Disease-causing organisms could be genetically engineered to only be harmful to plants.
Disease-causing organisms could be genetically engineered to produce insulin instead of toxins.
Harmless organisms could be genetically engineered to recognize and destroy random cells in the body.
14. In the early to mid-1980's, police began using DNA evidence to convict criminals of violent crimes.
Currently, techniques such as DNA fingerprinting are frequently used in criminal investigations, and some
countries, such as England, even keep DNA databases so that persons who commit crimes may be more
quickly apprehended.
To what branch of science do these techniques belong?
A. biotechnology
B. inorganic chemistry
C. comparative anatomy
D. quantum physics
15. Genetic engineering, gene splicing, and recombinant DNA technology are all techniques used in
biotechnology. Before using these technologies, however, what is required?
A.
B.
C.
D.
a doctorate degree in biotechnology or molecular biology
specific scientific knowledge about the natural system being modified
approval of their usage by popular vote
a patent for the technology in question
16. Technology Enhanced Questions are not available in Word format.
17. Malaria is a disease caused by parasites that reproduce within red blood cells. Malaria can cause fever,
chills, nausea, flu-like symptoms, and in some cases, coma and death. This disease is prevalent in warm
climates, especially South America, Africa, and the southern portions of Asia.
Sickle-cell anemia is a genetic disorder that causes red blood cells to change shape when they are
deoxygenated. The resultant sickle-shaped blood cells can get stuck in blood vessels and cause damage and
pain. This disease is also prevalent in South America, Africa, and Asia.
Lately, it was discovered that people who carry the sickle-cell trait heterozygously are resistant to malaria. How
could biotechnology best use this infomation to help people living in these areas?
A. Biotechnology could be used to eliminate all sickle-cell genes.
B. Biotechnology could be used to make the climate cooler so that mosquitoes are unable to breed.
C. Biotechnology could be used to insert the malaria resistant genes without causing sickle cell anemia.
D. Biotechnology could be used to alter the mosquito DNA.
18. Advances in biotechnology, especially regarding genetic testing and gene therapy, now allow for the
screening and possible treatment of many genetic disorders. During gene therapy, for example, specific gene
sequences are inserted into an individual's cells and tissues to replace a defective or mutant allele.
What have scientists found to be the most efficient and effective way to insert new sequences into an
individual?
A.
B.
C.
D.
Scientists irradiate genes so that they can be absorbed through the skin.
Scientists inject DNA strands into cells using a syringe.
Scientists have created genetically altered foods that release DNA during digestion.
Scientists use viruses to insert specific gene sequences.
19. Some types of crops have been genetically-engineered to resist certain types of diseases and pests. How
might these genetically-engineered crops impact the environment?
A.
B.
C.
D.
They will harm the environment by promoting slash and burn agriculture.
They will help the environment by allowing farmers to use fewer pesticides.
They will help the environment by causing pest species to become extinct.
They will harm the environment by introducing synthetic genes into other plants.
20. Genetic engineering is the process of manipulating genes for practical purposes.
How could genetic engineering most likely benefit people with genetic diseases in the future?
A.
B.
Genes causing diseases could be repaired through the use of recombinant DNA.
Genes causing diseases could be cloned and placed into other human cells.
Genes causing diseases could be eradicated from the human genome through the use of restriction
C. enzymes.
D.
Genes causing diseases could be replaced with various types of plant genes.
21. People suffering from diabetes need to be injected with insulin in order to keep their blood glucose levels
stable. In the early 1900s, insulin for diabetes patients was extracted from slaughtered cows and pigs.
However, in the 1970s, genetic engineering technology allowed scientists to engineer a bacterium to produce
human insulin.
How does this new form of biotechnology most likely benefit society?
A.
B.
C.
D.
There is no longer a large market for cow and pig organs.
Patients with diabetes now have a steady, inexpensive supply of insulin available.
There are no benefits to this form of biotechnology.
Genetically engineered bacteria cannot become pathogenic to humans.
22. It has been found that the tenderness of beef can be predicted by analyzing a cow's genes. So,
commercial tests are now available for farmers to be able to determine which of their cows possess the "tough"
gene and which possess the "tender" gene. If a farmer routinely tests his cattle and only allows cows with the
"tender" gene to mate, what is he doing?
A. forensic testing
B. selective breeding
C. genetic bias
D. recombinant DNA technology
23. In 1990, scientists at the National Institutes of Health used gene therapy to try to treat a 4-year-old girl
suffering from severe combined immunodeficiency disease (SCID). This genetic disease made her extremely
susceptible to infections. The scientists used a virus to inject normal genes into the girl's immune system cells.
The experiment was moderately successful, and the girl's health improved but only for short periods of time.
If this form of gene therapy could be fine-tuned, how would it impact society?
A. The number of infections from genetically-engineered viruses would increase.
B. Most Americans would no longer suffer from heart disease.
C. People would need to be genetically tested before having children together.
D. Many genetic diseases would be curable.
24. Genetic disorders are caused by the insertion, deletion, or alteration of segments of DNA. However, in
order for scientists to be able to determine which genes are faulty, they must first know the normal sequences
of DNA. In 1990, an international effort began to analyze the human DNA sequence.
What is the name given to this global research that was completed in 2003?
A. The National Institute of Health
B. The Geneva Conference
C. The DNA Revolution
D. The Human Genome Project
25. Technology Enhanced Questions are not available in Word format.
26. Many crops such as tomatoes and corn are now routinely genetically manipulated to become more
resistant to disease and herbicides. What is one disadvantage of this genetic resistance?
A. The crops always become less flavorful and less nutritious.
B. The genes may be transferred to weeds during pollination.
C. The genes are transferred to their own progeny when they reproduce.
D. The crops are no longer able to reproduce.
27. In the 1920's, a woman by the name of Anna Anderson claimed to be the Grand Duchess Anastasia, the
youngest daughter of Tsar Nicholas II. However, DNA testing confirmed that she was not who she claimed to
be. Which of the following uses of biotechnology does this example best demonstrate?
A. Biotechnology allows for the screening and possible treatment of genetic disorders.
B. Biotechnology allows for the improved varieties of plants, animals, and medicines.
C. Biotechnology allows for criminals to be captured through forensic testing.
D. Biotechnology allows for determining the degree of relatedness among individuals.
28. Scientists have taken genes from a species of bacteria that is pathogenic to several insects and inserted
the genes into potato plants. The bacterial genes cause a cell to produce toxins that kill the insects. As the
potato plants grow, every cell of the plant contains the toxin-producing genes. This makes the potato resistant
to attack by crop pests.
Which of the following is a limitation of this new technology?
A.
There are no foreseen limitations with inserting bacterial genes into crop plants.
The genetically altered potato plants will kill off so many insects that companies that manufacture
B. pesticides will soon go out of business.
C.
Over time, insects are likely to develop resistance to the bacterial toxin.
The introduced gene will cause more diversity in the potato's genome, thus causing the potato plant to
D. become extinct.
29. Gene therapy is an artificial means of altering genetic material. Why might gene therapy be performed?
A. to try to break a bad habit
B. to try to produce a negative effect
C. to try to become more emotionally stable
D. to try to cure a genetic disorder
30. Until recently, looking through detailed records on family history of disease was the only way to try to avoid
certain genetic conditions in some purebred dogs, such as a bleeding disorder called von Willebrand's
Disease. What technological advances may have reduced the need for this process?
A. determination of the sequence of the human genome
B. development of canine testing for genetic disease carriers
C. none of these
D. use of reproductive sperm donation to increase fertility
Answers
1. A
2. B
3. B
4. C
5. C
6. -7. B
8. D
9. A
10. D
11. D
12. A
13. A
14. A
15. B
16. -17. C
18. D
19. B
20. A
21. B
22. B
23. D
24. D
25. -26. B
27. D
28. C
29. D
30. B
Explanations
1. Gene splicing involves cutting a segment of DNA from one organism and inserting the segment into
the DNA sequence of another organism. For example, a segment of human DNA that codes for insulin
production can be inserted into bacterial DNA. This causes the bacterium to begin producing human insulin
which diabetics can then use to treat their disease.
2. Different enzymes can be used to cut, copy, and move segments of DNA.
Characteristics produced by the segments of DNA can then be expressed when these segments are inserted
into new organisms, such as bacteria.
3. By using genetically-engineered bacteria, insulin can now be mass-produced at factories, thus creating a
reliable source for this medicine. This makes insulin cheaper and more readily available.
4. Bacteria that help clean up pollutants in the environment are called bioremediating bacteria. These bacteria
will enable people to easily clean up spilled pollutants in the environment.
5. The combustion of biodiesel compared to petroleum diesel results in a significant reduction of hydrocarbons,
carbon monoxide, particulate matter, and sulfates. Sulfates are a leading cause of acid rain.
6. -7. Gene splicing involves cutting a segment of DNA from one organism and inserting the segment into the
DNA sequence of another organism. Gene splicing has many useful applications, including genetically
engineering pest-resistant plants and insulin producing bacteria.
8. Today, several crops have been genetically modified to be more nutritious. For example, genetically
modified rice contains more iron and vitamin A than other types of rice.
9. Edible vaccines are much easier to administer than traditional vaccines that must be injected. Edible
vaccines would be cheaper to manufacture than traditional vaccines because the vaccine would be produced
by the plant as it grows.
10. Gene flow between similar species is a common occurrence. It is possible for genetically-engineered genes
in a crop plant to transfer to related species of wild plants. This could cause multiple problems. For example, if
the genetically-engineered gene makes the plant immune to a weed killer, then wild plants that are considered
weeds by the farmer would no longer be controllable with weed killers.
11. The discovery of a specific gene mutation that is associated with the severe form of the disease would help
to determine if a patient will have a severe form of the disease in childhood.
The other choices would not be able to distinguish the mild, moderate, and severe forms of the disease.
12. Biotechnology is often used to produce crops that have been genetically altered to be more resistant to
insects and pests. This means that less pesticides will need to be used, and fewer toxins will be released into
the environment.
13. Vaccines made by genetic engineering avoid the problem of possibly causing an infection in the patient by
modifying a harmless organism to have the surface proteins of a disease-causing organism. The harmless
organism is injected into a person, and that person's immune system learns to recognize the dangerous
surface proteins without having to actually come into contact with the disease-causing organism to which those
proteins belong.
14. Biotechnology is a branch of science which combines technology with many other scientific disciplines
such as genetics, molecular biology, and biochemistry. Biotechnology is used in a wide range of practical fields
such as agriculture, food science, medicine, and forensics.
15. Genetic engineering, recombinant DNA technology, and gene splicing are methods that are commonly
used to enhance cells through the introduction of new DNA into the cells. In order to do this, however, specific
scientific knowledge about the natural system being modified is required.
To better understand this concept, genetic engineering can be likened to enhancing a car. It is possible, for
example, to make a better and faster car by changing out various parts of the car - the engine, the wheels, etc.
But it is essential to fully understand how a car works and where certain parts ought to go before enhancement
can begin. Putting new wheels where the engine ought to go, for example, won't enhance the car. Instead, it
will make it less functional.
16. -17. Since the sickle cell genes provide resistance to malaria, it would not be beneficial to eliminate all sickle
cell genes. However, biotechnology, or gene therapy, could be used to insert the malaria resistant genes
without causing sickle cell anemia. As of yet, no one has been able to successfully do this, but perhaps
someone will be able to find a vaccine for malaria and a cure for sickle cell anemia some day in the future.
18. Since, by nature, all viruses insert their genetic material into their host cells as part of their replication cycle,
scientists often use viruses to insert specific genetic sequences into cells.
This process is very intricate, however, and requires the scientist to have significant knowledge about the virus'
genome. The disease causing parts of the virus must be removed and replaced with the desired DNA
sequence, but the parts that cause the virus to replicate must remain intact in order for this procedure to work.
19. Pest- and disease-resistant plants help farmers in many ways. This type of genetically-engineered plant
allows the farmers to spray fewer pesticides on their crops. This saves farmers money and is beneficial to the
environment, because it avoids the introduction of dangerous chemicals into local soil, groundwater, and
runoff.
20. Scientists hope that one of the main applications of the Human Genome Project will be the identification of
genes that cause genetic diseases. When these genes are located, there is the possibility that the genes can
be replaced with "healthy" versions of the same gene, thus curing the disease.
21. Harvesting drugs from plants and animals can be difficult and expensive. In addition, droughts or infectious
diseases can cause severe shortages in the crops or herds that people rely on for a particular drug. For this
reason, drug manufacturers try to develop methods to manufacture drugs in an easily reproducible manner
using raw materials.
22. Using DNA technology to choose which cattle to mate is known as selective breeding. This method is
used by many farmers when selecting which livestock or crops to breed or propagate.
23. The successful use of gene therapy would allow doctors to cure, rather than simply treat, genetic diseases.
24. The Human Genome Project began in October of 1990 and was completed in April of 2003. Scientists
around the world participated in this project to map out the sequences of DNA found in all humans. Continuing
research on the human genome may some day be used to cure genetic disorders by gene therapy.
25. -26. One disadvantage of crops that have been genetically altered to be more resistant to disease and
herbicides is that some of the genes may be transferred to weeds or other undesirable plants during
pollination. The result of this cross-pollination will be an increase in the number of undesirable plants.
27. Biotechnological techniques, such as the analysis of DNA sequences, allows for the relatedness among
individuals to be determined. This usage is demonstrated by the tale of Anna Anderson.
28. Initially, the vast majority of the insect population may be vulnerable to the toxin, and the technology will
achieve its goal. But through sexual reproduction, mutation, and other factors, a small number of the insects
may gain immunity to the toxin. Over time, toxin-resistant population will expand and the toxin-vulnerable
population will fall until the toxin is ultimately ineffective.
29. Gene therapy is used to try to cure genetic disorders. During this process, specific DNA sequences are
inserted into an individual to try to replace faulty or absent genes, such that normal gene expression can occur
rather than abnormal gene expression.
30. In an attempt to decrease the number of purebred dogs with genetic conditions, testing on dog-specific
genes can help identify carriers of the alleles that result in disease when inherited from both parents.
The use of sperm donation without testing would continue the risk for inherited disease. Humans and dogs
have different gene locations, so the Human Genome Project does not directly impact the issue of genetic
disease in dogs.