This chapter introduces the first major bacterial genetic transfer process to be discovered—genetic transformation. Initially, the mechanism appears to be improbable. Donor cells release large DNA fragments (as heavy as several million daltons), and the fragments diffuse through the culture medium to recipient cells. They are then transported across the cell wall and cell membrane into the cytoplasm where recombination occurs. The process is distinct from another biologic phenomenon also denoted transformation, the conversion of normal mammalian cells into tumor cells. To emphasize this difference, in this book the bacterial process is always described as genetic transformation.
KeywordsGenetic Transformation Competent Cell Recipient Cell Pseudomonas Stutzeri Helper Phage
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