The distribution of the numbers of mutants in bacterial populations
Statistical calculations are made of the distribution numbers of mutants in a culture of bacteria in which the number of mutants increases on account both of new mutations and of division of old mutants. In this way the largely qualitative conclusions of Luria and Delbruck are extended and placed on a firm quantitative basis. The results of these calculations, which enable the mutation rate to be inferred from experiments with parallel cultures, are presented in the form of tables. Statistically efficient methods of using these tables are discussed.
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