The role of conjugative transposons in the Enterobacteriaceae
- Cite this article as:
- Pembroke, J., MacMahon, C. & McGrath, B. CMLS, Cell. Mol. Life Sci. (2002) 59: 2055. doi:10.1007/s000180200005
- 98 Downloads
Although widely studied in Gram-positive Streptococci and in the Gram-negative Bacteroides, there is a scarcity of information on the occurrence and nature of conjugative transposon-like elements in the well-studied Enterobacteriaceae. In fact, some of the major reviews on conjugative transposons prior to 1996 failed to mention their occurrence in this group. Recently, their presence has been reported in Salmonella, Vibrio and Proteus species, and in some cases such as the SXT element in Vibrio and the IncJ group element CTnR391, there has been some molecular characterization. The elements thus far examined appear to be larger than the common Gram-positive conjugative transposons and to be mosaic in structure, with genes derived from several sources. Recent evidence suggests that in the Enterobacteriaceae the elements may be related to enteric pathogenicity islands. The evolution, distribution and role of these elements in the Enterobacteriaceae is discussed.