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Tracking Microorganisms and Genes in the Environment

  • Ronald M. Atlas
  • Gary S. Sayler
Part of the Basic Life Sciences book series (BLSC, volume 45)

Abstract

Many concerns have been expressed about the possible hazards resulting from the release into natural environments of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) derived from recombinant DNA (rDNA) technology (7, 15, 42). These concerns center around the possibilities that GEMs, or host cells into which rDNA might move, could demonstrate pathogenicity, causing disease in plants or animals, or that GEMs or subsequent hosts for the rDNA could have detrimental effects on natural ecosystems. Many different disaster scenarios have been postulated, ranging from a deadly “Andromeda strain” pathogen produced by rDNA technology causing massive mortalities, to the release of a GEM altering the world climate. Many similar concerns were raised in the early 1970s when the technology for producing GEMs was first developed, leading to the Asilomar Conference in February 1975, and the development of guidelines and oversight by the Recombinant Advisory Committee (RAC) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the safe handling of GEMs.

Keywords

rDNA Sequence Gene Probe Fluorescent Antibody Specific Gene Probe Colony Hybridization 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald M. Atlas
    • 1
  • Gary S. Sayler
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA
  2. 2.Graduate Ecology ProgramUniversity of TennesseeKnoxvilleUSA

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