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J Virol. 1977 Feb;21(2):554-9.

Increased reproductive fitness of Escherichia coli lambda lysogens.


Lambda lysogens of Escherichia coli reproduce more rapidly than nonlysogens during aerobic growth in glucose-limited chemostats. If the environment is changed to anaerobic growth, the situation is reversed, and the lysogen reproduces more slowly than the nonlysogen. Based on a tetrazolium dye assay, the increased fitness of the lambda lysogen during aerobic growth seems to result from a continued high metabolic rate as glucose becomes limiting, whereas the metabolic rate of the nonlysogen declines. The lambda rex gene is required for the growth advantage of lysogens since lack of rex function causes lambda lysogens to lose their reproductive advantage over nonlysogens.

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