DNA is universal-- human genes can be inserted into, and expressed by, bacteria. Buf if this is so, why is it not so easy to do the opposite-- why don’t we insert bacterial genes into humans?

It is possible and has been done but generally there are a number of considerations. The DNA may be universal but DNA expression machinery and protein production machinery isn't. Also, bacteria are lower down the evolutionary chain than we are so we can probably do most of what they do better though there are exceptions.

Agreed and in addition there are major ethical issues let alone technical.

FYI Ece, although not the same as molecularly engineering a construct to insert bacterial DNA into our genomes, there is evidence for 'natural' lateral gene transfer of viral DNA into the human genome - see
http://journals.plos.org/ploscompbiol/a … bi.1003107 and
http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/a … en.1003877

Last edited by Steve Lolait (15th Mar 2016 15:34:10)