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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 1994 Sep 15;122(1-2):173-9.

Heterogeneric conjugal transfer of the pheromone-responsive plasmid pIP964 (IncHlyI) of Enterococcus faecalis in the apparent absence of pheromone induction.

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Laboratoire de Microbiologie INSERM U-411, Faculté de Médecine Necker-Enfants Malades, Paris, France.


Erythromycin-resistant derivatives of the pheromone-responsive plasmid pIP964 from Enterococcus faecalis were constructed to study its host range. This was done by inserting the integrative vector pAT112 and the related replicon pTCR1 harboring oriR of the broad host range plasmid pAM beta 1 into the hemolysin-bacteriocin operon of pIP964, to give pTCR2 and pTCR3, respectively. Plasmid pTCR2 was transferred by filter matings from E. faecalis to Enterococcus faecium and Listeria monocytogenes at frequencies of 2 x 10(-7) and 5 x 10(-7) per donor, respectively, in the apparent absence of pheromone induction and cellular aggregation. In these hosts, pTCR2 remained intact as a self-replicating element and maintained its transfer capabilities. Plasmid pTCR3, but not pTCR2, was transferred at similar frequencies from E. faecalis to Lactococcus lactis and Streptococcus agalactiae. Thus, the transfer system of pIP964 possesses a broader host-range than its replication system.

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