+ Site Statistics
+ Search Articles
+ PDF Full Text Service
How our service works
Request PDF Full Text
+ Follow Us
Follow on Facebook
Follow on Twitter
Follow on LinkedIn
+ Subscribe to Site Feeds
Most Shared
PDF Full Text
+ Translate
+ Recently Requested

The maintenance of sex in bacteria is ensured by its potential to reload genes



The maintenance of sex in bacteria is ensured by its potential to reload genes



Genetics 174(4): 2173-2180



Why sex is maintained in nature is a fundamental question in biology. Natural genetic transformation (NGT) is a sexual process by which bacteria actively take up exogenous DNA and use it to replace homologous chromosomal sequences. As it has been demonstrated, the role of NGT in repairing deleterious mutations under constant selection is insufficient for its survival, and the lack of other viable explanations have left no alternative except that DNA uptake provides nucleotides for food. Here we develop a novel simulation approach for the long-term dynamics of genome organization (involving the loss and acquisition of genes) in a bacterial species consisting of a large number of spatially distinct populations subject to independently fluctuating ecological conditions. Our results show that in the presence of weak interpopulation migration NGT is able to subsist as a mechanism to reload locally lost, intermittently selected genes from the collective gene pool of the species through DNA uptake from migrants. Reloading genes and combining them with those in locally adapted genomes allow individual cells to readapt faster to environmental changes. The machinery of transformation survives under a wide range of model parameters readily encompassing real-world biological conditions. These findings imply that the primary role of NGT is not to serve the cell with food, but to provide homologous sequences for restoring genes that have disappeared from or become degraded in the local population.

Please choose payment method:






(PDF emailed within 0-6 h: $19.90)

Accession: 013024851

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 17028325

DOI: 10.1534/genetics.106.063412


Related references

Dose effect of clopidogrel reloading in patients already on 75-mg maintenance dose: the Reload with Clopidogrel Before Coronary Angioplasty in Subjects Treated Long Term with Dual Antiplatelet Therapy (RELOAD) study. Circulation 118(12): 1225-1233, 2008

Trastuzumab therapy in breast cancer: To reload or not to reload?. Journal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice 20(4): 319-320, 2013

Impact of prasugrel reload dosing regimens on high on-treatment platelet reactivity rates in patients on maintenance prasugrel therapy. Jacc. Cardiovascular Interventions 6(2): 182-184, 2013

Brassinosteroid homeostasis in Arabidopsis is ensured by feedback expressions of multiple genes involved in its metabolism. Plant Physiology 138(2): 1117-1125, 2005

The maintenance in the oral cavity of children of tetracycline-resistant bacteria and the genes encoding such resistance. Journal of Antimicrobial ChemoTherapy 56(3): 524-531, 2005

Resistance of potential probiotic lactic acid bacteria and bifidobacteria of African and European origin to antimicrobials: determination and transferability of the resistance genes to other bacteria. International Journal of Food Microbiology 121(2): 217-224, 2007

DomainSieve: a protein domain-based screen that led to the identification of dam-associated genes with potential link to DNA maintenance. Bioinformatics 22(16): 1935-1941, 2006

Antibiotic selective pressure for the maintenance of antibiotic resistant genes in coliform bacteria isolated from the aquatic environment. Water Science and Technology 47(3): 249-253, 2003

Analysis of enteric bacteria SOS operator sequences and description of potential DNA damage-inducible genes. Brazilian Journal of Genetics 19(2): 189-195, 1996

Patho-Genes.org: a website dedicated to gene sequences of potential bioterror bacteria and PCR primers used to amplify them. Microbial Biotechnology 5(5): 594-598, 2013

Bacteriophages carrying Shiga toxin genes: genomic variations, detection and potential treatment of pathogenic bacteria. Future Microbiology 6(8): 909-924, 2011

Seafood a potential source of some zoonotic bacteria in Zagazig, Egypt, with the molecular detection of Listeria monocytogenes virulence genes. Veterinaria Italiana 49(3): 299-308, 2014

Arsenic detoxification potential of aox genes in arsenite-oxidizing bacteria isolated from natural and constructed wetlands in the Republic of Korea. Environmental Geochemistry and Health 32(2): 95-105, 2010

Analysis of bacteria-challenged wild silkmoth, Antheraea mylitta (lepidoptera) transcriptome reveals potential immune genes. Bmc Genomics 7: 184, 2006

Temperature-sensitive bacterial pathogens generated by the substitution of essential genes from cold-loving bacteria: potential use as live vaccines. Journal of Molecular Medicine 89(5): 437-444, 2011