What is Genetic Engineering?
Genetic Engineering is concerned with deliberate manipulation of the genetic material (DNA) of a living organism by artificial methods. The study of genetic engineering involves insertion of new genetic material at an unspecified location in the host genome by isolating and copying the genetic material of interest using molecular cloning methods to generate a DNA sequence containing the required genetic elements for expression, and then inserting this construct into the host organism.
Other methods consist of gene targeting and knocking out exact genes via engineered nucleases such as zinc finger nucleases or engineered homing endonucleases. The field of genetic engineering studies how traits and characteristics of an organism are transmitted through the generations, and how genetic disorders are caused.
Genetic Engineering is also concerned with developing hybrid varieties of plants, making plants disease resistant. Genetic engineering techniques are used in research, biotechnology, and medicine.
Few courses offered in this field are: –
- Bachelor of Engineering in Genetic Engineering
- Bachelor of Technology in Genetic Engineering
- Master of Engineering in Genetic Engineering
- Master of Technology in Genetic Engineering
- Bachelor of Science in life sciences with genetics as optional subjects
To pursue undergraduate course in genetic engineering, candidates should be 10+2 pass in science stream from recognized board examination. Most colleges offer admission on the basis of marks obtained in Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) and All India Engineering/Pharmacy/Architecture Entrance Examination (AIEEE).
To pursue postgraduate course in genetic engineering, candidates should be B.E / B.Tech in genetic engineering from recognized University. Candidates should have valid GATE score.
Few Specializations under this field: –
- Classical genetics
- Behavioral genetics
- Clinical genetics
- Molecular genetics
- Population, quantitative and ecological genetics
- Genetic algorithms
Genetic Engineering graduates find opportunities in medical and pharmaceutical industries, agriculture, research and development departments of government and private organizations. The Institute of Genomic and Integrative Biology, Delhi; Biochemical Engineering Research and Process Development Centre, Chandigarh; The Centre for DNA Fingerprint and Diagnostics, Hyderabad; and The National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi are some of the major organizations where Genetic engineering graduates are sought.
Pay package: –
The pay package offered for genetic engineers is comparatively higher than other engineering graduates. They are offered a monthly salary of Rs.20, 000 to 30,000 in public sector and even higher in private sector.