1. Introduction To Biotechnology
According to Campbell et al. (2008) biotechnology is the manipulation of organism or their components to make useful products. The word “Biotechnology” originates from the word “Biology” and “Technology”. By looking at the word, we can say that biotechnology is a technology based on biology. Human had practiced biotechnology since centuries ago mostly involving food. Biotechnology can be classify into two; traditional and modern biotechnology.
Traditional biotechnology is a way of using living organism to make new product or manipulate the existing ones. It relies on nature and natural processes. Traditional biotechnology processes often takes a longer time to get the desired product as the chemical reactions carried out by the microorganism are slow. Traditional biotechnology involves fermentation of food and beverage, animal and plant breeding, and the utilization of waste product. All these processes occurs over a time until the final product can be obtained.
Whereas modern biotechnology are related manipulation of genes, cells and living tissue with controlled manner to make any changes in the genetic make-up of an organism. Other modern biotechnology involves protein or enzyme manipulation and manipulation of reproduction process. Biotechnology are aiming to improve the quality of lives. In the recent years, modern biotechnology industries are growing at a fast pace and more biotechnology products are being produce and used, especially in medical industry. With the advancement of modern biotechnology, more medicines and vaccines were produced to help in life saving.
The applications of biotechnology are so broad and the advantages so compelling, that virtually every industry is using this technology (Keener, Hoban & Balasubramaniam, 2014). Biotechnology enable industries such as pharmaceuticals, textiles, forestry and etc. to produce new and better product at a greater speed, efficient and flexible.
2. Scenario on Biotechnology industries practices in Malaysia compared to other Asian countries.
There are three biotechnology sectors being practiced in Malaysia; agricultural biotechnology, industrial biotechnology, and healthcare biotechnology. The agricultural biotechnology sector in Malaysia focuses on four main areas which are crops, natural products, livestock, and marine aquaculture. Malaysia generates crop yield enhancements through tissue culture technology and genome mapping (BiotechCorp, 2009). The technology comes with advantages such as increasing productivity and low costing, but sometimes it is very time consuming. In Asian countries such as China have produced genetically modified crops which not only increase the yields but also increase the resistance to insects and pests, thus minimize the use of pesticides, produce higher quality of agricultural products, provide more growing cycles to farmers, and promote efficient use of land. However, people are afraid of genetically modified (GM)...