Bacterial and (New) Phage Genetics

Type of instruction




Part of degree program


Recommended in

Semesters 1-4

Typically offered in

Autumn/Spring semester

Course description

1. The importance of early phage genetics: The DNA as the hereditary material, Avery experiment, Hershey-Chase experiment. The identification of restriction and modification. Deciphering the "code".

2. The T4 model system: Phage experimental methods. Early genes. Late genes. Regulation of gene expression, timing. Virulent phages.

3. The genetics of temperate phages: Lysogeny. Maintaining the lysogenic status. Lysogen-virulent transition. Integration, excision.

4. Regulatory systems: Regulation of transcription. Timing with antitermination.

5. Transduction: Introduction of DNA with transduction. Specialized and general transduction

6. Transformation: Pneumococcus, Bacillus transformation. Non-natural transformation. Competence.

7. Conjugation: F plasmid. Conjugative plasmids

8. Plasmids: Chromosome mobilizing plasmids. Bacteriocins. Resistance plasmids.

9. Applied phage genetics: Recombinant DNA technology, vectors: Cloning vectors. Replacement and insertion vectors

10. Recombination, integration systems: Site-specific recombination. Illegitim recombination. Cambell type recombination.

11. Microbial plant cell wall degradation: Structure and composition of the plant cell wall. Aerobic and anaerobic systems. Genes involved in cell wall degradation

12. New phage applications (New phage genetics): Medical applications. Phage display. Phage two-hybrid system

13. Bacteriophage evolution in the frame of genome programmes: Mosaic genome building. The lack of molecular clock. Structural/proteome evlution

14. Bacterial evolution: Genome size. The importance of lateral gene transfer. Molecular taxonomy (identification Archaea, Eubacteria). The importance of transposons and phages in genome evolution. The significance of resistance plasmids.

  • E. A. Birge: Bacterial and bacteriophage genetics, 4th ed., Springer Science & Business Media, 2013, ISBN 9781475732580