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Microbiol Immunol. 1986;30(7):621-8.

Transformation by extracellular DNA produced by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Abstract

Most Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains are capable of producing extracellular DNA. Very closely linked chromosomal markers (leu+ and trp+) were co-transferred to P. aeruginosa PAO1819 (leu9001, trp9008) by the extracellular DNA produced by P. aeruginosa strains IFO3445 and PAO1 at a frequency of 10(-7) to 10(-8). Treatment of the extracellular DNA with DNase, heating at 95 C or sonication completely destroyed its transforming ability. The R plasmid in the extracellular DNA produced by P. aeruginosa IFO3445 (RP4) or PAO2142 (RLb679) could be transferred to Escherichia coli ML4901 or P. aeruginosa PAO1819. The resultant transformants showed identical resistance patterns in the respective donors, and the sizes of the DNAs of RLb679 and RP4 isolated from the transformants were the same as those in the respective donors. These results demonstrate that the extracellular DNA contains both chromosomal DNA and plasmid DNA, and that it exhibits transforming ability. This implies that transformation by the extracellular DNA produced by P. aeruginosa may occur in nature and this seems to be of clinical importance in view of the spread of R plasmids among pathogens.

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