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Mol Microbiol. 1994 Jul;13(1):161-9.

A small (2.4 Mb) Bacillus cereus chromosome corresponds to a conserved region of a larger (5.3 Mb) Bacillus cereus chromosome.

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1
Institute of Pharmacy, University of Oslo, Norway.

Abstract

We have determined the sizes of the chromosomes of six Bacillus cereus strains (range 2.4-4.3 Mb) and constructed a physical map of the smallest B. cereus chromosome (2.4 Mb). This map was compared to those of the chromosomes of four B. cereus strains and one B. thuringiensis strain previously determined to be 5.4-6.3 Mb. Of more than 50 probes, 30 were localized to the same half of the larger B. cereus and B. thuringiensis chromosomes. All 30 were also present on the small chromosome. Twenty of the probes present on the other half of the larger chromosomes were either present on extrachromosomal DNA, or absent from the B. cereus strain carrying the small chromosome. We propose that the genome of B. cereus/B. thuringiensis has one constant part and another less stable part which is more easily mobilized into other genetic elements. This part of the genome is localized to one region of the chromosome and may be subject to deletions or more frequent relocations between the chromosome and episomal elements of varying sizes up to the order of megabases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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