Transduction in the aquatic environment

  • Martin Day
  • Julian Marchesi


The aquatic environment dominates the Earth, both in terms of its global proportion and also the population sizes and diversity of life maintained within it. Bacteriophage are viruses that prey on bacterial hosts and are widespread in natural systems; the aquatic environment being no exception [4, 6]. There are a wide variety of morphological phage types [1] and many of those that look similar can be demonstrated to have taxonomically different host species. The natural relationships between phage and their hosts has received little attention despite their abundance and widespread distribution. For example in the northern Adriatic Sea, electron microscopy-studies have shown that natural populations of bacteria appear to have a significant degree of phage infection. The percentage of rods with mature phages visible internally was significantly correlated to increasing rod densities [42]. Up to 27% of rods, 79% of cocci and 100% of spirillae were visibly infected with viruses. The highest overall infection frequency of the entire bacterial community was 30%. This calculation assumed that mature phage are only visible during the last 14 to 27% of the latent period [29].


Phage Particle Recipient Strain Silver Nitrate Solution Nutrient Agar Plate Transduction Frequency 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Day
    • 1
  • Julian Marchesi
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Pure and Applied BiologyUniversity of WalesCardiffUK

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