Scientists find a new quasi-sexual method of bacterial reproduction

A new report describes a process by which bacteria can have the best of both sexual and asexual reproduction – the first genome-wide view of conjugal HGT in bacteria at the nucleotide level.

Using a bacterial species related to the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, Keith Derbyshire, Todd Gray and colleagues, from the Wadsworth Centre in New York, show that a multitude of DNA fragments are simultaneously transferred from a donor bacterial strain to a recipient strain to create new strains that are genetic blends of the parents. The newly-described process, called Distributive Conjugal Transfer, creates patchwork genomes that are different from either parent and different from any siblings. This generates a degree of genome-wide variation similar to that generated in sexual reproduction.

Read the full article here: Distributive Conjugal Transfer – The Advantages Of Sex, None Of The Downsides

 

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