Mycobacteriophage Vector Systems

William R. Jacobs, Scott B. Snapper, Margareta Tuckinan, Barry R. Bloom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Successful application of molecular genetic approaches to the study of mycobacteria necessitates the introduction of recombinant DNA molecules into mycobacterial cells. Efficient methods of introducing DNA into Mycobacterium smegmatis protoplasts have been developed, and the construction of mycobacteriophage recombinant DNA vectors has been initiated. Novel Escherichia coli-Mycobacterium shuttle vectors, termed shuttle phasmids, have been constructed. These vectors were constructed by inserting E. coli cosmids into nonessential regions of mycobacteriophage DNAs. Shuttle phasmids are multifunctional vectors that replicate in E. coli as plasmids and replicate in mycobacteria as phage. The presence of the bacteriophage λ cos sequences permits the use of the λ, in vitro packaging system for efficient cloning of additional genes into these vectors. Temperate shuttle phasmids have been constructed that can infect and lyse mycobacterial cells or lysogenize mycobacterial cells to stably integrate and express cloned DNA into mycobacterial genomes. Shuttle phasmids can be transduced into a wide variety of mycobacterial species and thus should permit the development of molecular genetic systems for the mycobacteria.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S404-S410
JournalReviews of infectious diseases
StatePublished - Mar 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)


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