A complete physical map of a Bacillus thuringiensis chromosome.

TitleA complete physical map of a Bacillus thuringiensis chromosome.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1993
JournalJournal of bacteriology

Bacillus thuringiensis is the source of the most widely used biological pesticide, through its production of insecticidal toxins. The toxin genes are often localized on plasmids. We have constructed a physical map of a Bacillus thuringiensis chromosome by aligning 16 fragments obtained by digestion with the restriction enzyme NotI. The fragments ranged from 15 to 1,350 kb. The size of the chromosome was 5.4 Mb. The NotI DNA fingerprint patterns of 12 different B. thuringiensis strains showed marked variation. The cryIA-type toxin gene was present on the chromosome in four strains, was extrachromosomal in four strains, and was both chromosomal and extrachromosomal in two strains. A Tn4430 transposon probe hybridized to 5 of the 10 cryIA-positive chromosomal fragments, while cryIA and the transposon often hybridized to different extrachromosomal bands. Ten of the strains were hemolytic when grown on agar plates containing human erythrocytes. Nine of the strains were positive when assayed for the presence of Bacillus cereus enterotoxin. We conclude that B. thuringiensis is very closely related to B. cereus and that the distinction between B. cereus and B. thuringiensis should be reconsidered.

Short TitleJ Bacteriol
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