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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Chromosome rearrangements induced by recombinant coliphage lambda placMu.

Operon fusions to lacZ, commonly used to study bacterial gene expression in vivo, are normally constructed using phage derivatives such as lambda placMu53 or Mud-1. These derivatives contain a part of trp operon, and we have found that, when integrated into the chromosome, recombination can occur at high frequency between this trp DNA and the chromosomal trp operon leading to chromosomal inversions which fuse lacZ to the trp promoter. Large segments of the chromosome can be inverted by such rearrangements and their occurrence can seriously complicate the isolation of regulatory mutations and other studies unless appropriate precautions are taken. This phenomenon provides a simple means of isolating inversions of defined chromosomal segments and determining the direction of transcription of some lacZ operon fusions.[1]


  1. Chromosome rearrangements induced by recombinant coliphage lambda placMu. Barr, G.C., Dorman, C.J., Mellor, J., Higgins, C.F. Gene (1990) [Pubmed]
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