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Chem Biol. 1998 Oct;5(10):R245-9.

Molecular biological access to the chemistry of unknown soil microbes: a new frontier for natural products.

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Department of Plant Pathology, University of Wisconsin-Madison 53706, USA.


Cultured soil microorganisms have provided a rich source of natural-product chemistry. Because only a tiny fraction of soil microbes from soil are readily cultured, soil might be the greatest untapped resource for novel chemistry. The concept of cloning the metagenome to access the collective genomes and the biosynthetic machinery of soil microflora is explored here.

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