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Trends Microbiol. 2001 Apr;9(4):185-91.

The tc genes of Photorhabdus: a growing family.

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Dept of Biology and Biochemistry, University of Bath, BA2 7AY, Bath, UK.


The toxin complex (tc) genes of Photorhabdus encode insecticidal, high molecular weight Tc toxins. These toxins have been suggested as useful alternatives to those derived from Bacillus thuringiensis for expression in insect-resistant transgenic plants. Although Photorhabdus luminescens is symbiotic with nematodes that kill insects, tc genes have recently been described from other insect-associated bacteria such as Serratia entomophila, an insect pathogen, and Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of bubonic plague, which has a flea vector. Here, recent advances in our understanding of the tc gene family are reviewed in view of their potential development as insect-control agents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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