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J Bacteriol. 1970 December; 104(3): 1266–1272.
PMCID: PMC248286

Vegetative Replication and Transfer Replication of Deoxyribonucleic Acid in Temperature-Sensitive Mutants of Escherichia coli K-12

Abstract

Crosses were carried out at 34 C and 42 C between eight pairs of isogenic strains of Escherichia coli K-12. The donor and recipient of each pair carried the same mutation for temperature-sensitive deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) synthesis; they differed only in the presence of F-lac in the donor and a spectinomycin-resistance marker in the recipient. A different temperature-sensitive mutation was present in each of the eight pairs, the eight temperature-sensitive mutations being located in at least two different genes. In all eight pairs, the transfer of F-lac occurred at high and equal rates at 34 C and 42 C, although vegetative DNA replication at 42 C was approximately 10−4 of that at 34 C. The transfer of F-lac at 42 C was accompanied in seven of the eight crosses by an equivalent amount of DNA synthesis in excess of that observed in the unmated controls. The DNA synthesized during transfer at 42 C was characterized by equilibrium centrifugation in cesium chloride and by its sedimentation velocity in sucrose gradients. It was found to have a density and a molecular weight characteristic of F-lac DNA. A small proportion of the material labeled during transfer was recovered in the form of covalently closed DNA. It is concluded that vegetative replication of the chromosome and transfer replication of F are separate processes, the former requiring at least two gene products which are nonessential for the latter.

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