The paper 'Five Ways that Molecular Biotechnology Is Used and Applied' is a perfect example of applied research. The recent advancement in technology has led to various developments in the field of science. One of the significant developments is on molecular biotechnology. The new technology is applied in the laboratory through the manipulation of genetic material and proteins. The technology has significantly been applied in human and animal health. The paper seeks to explain five ways in which molecular biotechnology is used and applied. Richard Preston on “ The Ebola Wars” will answer the questions through reflection on the article. There are various use and application of molecular biotechnology.
One of the significant use of technology is in the identification of disease-causing organisms. The application has been successful in the identification of some of the viruses causing diseases in human and animals. For example, technology has been used in the identification of HIV and Ebola viruses. The understanding of the Ebola virus has helped in knowing the possible carrier. As a result, it has been shown that the natural host of the virus may be fruit bat or some parasites that live in the bat body (Preston 1). The other application of the technology is to identify changes that take place in viruses.
The change that occurs in the virus is known as a mutation. The technology has managed to establish that some viruses keep on changing depending on the host, duration, and exposure to a certain form of environment. Moreover, the virus has shown to change on their own without any interference from the environment. For example, it has been realized that there are different strains of Ebola Virus that affects individuals in some of the Western States such as Sierra Leone (Preston 1). The other application of the technology is in describing the virus.
The technology has made it possible to describe the structural and chemical properties of some of the virus causing diseases. One of the viruses that have been successfully described is the Ebola Virus. Scientists have established that the virus is made up of six structural proteins. The proteins are intertwined together in an object that is similar to a strand of cooked spaghetti (Preston 1).
The size of the virus has been shown to be eight nanometers wide and a thousand nanometers long (Preston 1). This shows the importance of technology in analyzing an organism that is not visible through the unaided eye. Hence, it has been possible to understand the genetic component of the virus. Moreover, the technology is also used in understanding the mechanisms of various disease-causing organisms. For example, the technology has helped in understanding how Ebola works in the body once it gets in the bloodstream. The virus is shown to cause changes in the cell whereby it takes control of all activities of the cell machinery (Preston 1).
As a result, the cell starts making copies of the virus that moves to different parts of the body. The infected cells are said to send out a vast number of Ebola particles that continues to affect more cells until it reaches the peak of amplification (Preston 1). Lastly, the technology has been useful in the development of vaccines and new drugs. For example, the technology has helped to come up with the vaccine on the Ebola virus that is currently on trial stages.
ZMapp has been developed through technology. ZMapp is an experimental drug that is used in the treatment of Ebola. The drug is developed through growing it in tobacco plants (Preston 1). This shows the level technology has moved in coming up with new drugs to fight dangerous strains of the virus.
ReferencesPreston, Richard. “The Ebola Wars: How genomics research can help contain the outbreak.” Newyorker.com. Web. 03 November 2014.