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Chapter 10 : Transformation

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Abstract:

This chapter examines the process of transformation and discusses why the process of gene exchange is of value to those bacteria that participate in it. In trying to understand how bacteria interact with one another it is important to appreciate that they probably spend their lives in an association with siblings, interacting together with other species and genera in communities. Transformation is a chromosomally encoded process, and is a widespread but "patchy" gene-exchange process. Recombination is required to establish a gene in the genome. There are several possible routes for the evolution of transformation. Although transformation is a highly evolved process, it may have evolved under different selective conditions than those that exist now. The chapter examines the question what provides the DNA so that it is able to participate in transformation. It examines how transformation compares with other transfer processes. For years people have discussed plasmid transfer and said it is the most important mechanism for gene exchange. It is not the transfer event in itself that is important in evolution, but the time and place at which transfer occurs. Transformation acts in concert with the other processes to enable bacteria to survive, exploit, and evolve to counteract the perturbations of annual cycles. It also allows them to adapt to novel changes in their environments resulting from catastrophes of a local or global scale.

Citation: Day M. 2004. Transformation, p 158-172. In Miller R, Day M (ed), Microbial Evolution. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817749.ch10

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Chromosomal DNA
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Figures

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FIGURE 1

The “life cycle” of DNA participating in transformation.

Citation: Day M. 2004. Transformation, p 158-172. In Miller R, Day M (ed), Microbial Evolution. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817749.ch10
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References

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Tables

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TABLE 1

Bacteria active in gene transfer by transformation

Citation: Day M. 2004. Transformation, p 158-172. In Miller R, Day M (ed), Microbial Evolution. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817749.ch10
Generic image for table
Untitled

Citation: Day M. 2004. Transformation, p 158-172. In Miller R, Day M (ed), Microbial Evolution. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817749.ch10
Generic image for table
Untitled

Citation: Day M. 2004. Transformation, p 158-172. In Miller R, Day M (ed), Microbial Evolution. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817749.ch10
Generic image for table
Untitled

Citation: Day M. 2004. Transformation, p 158-172. In Miller R, Day M (ed), Microbial Evolution. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817749.ch10

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