Gene Transfer in Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Shuttle Phasmids to Enlightenment

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Infectious diseases have plagued humankind throughout history and have posed serious public health problems. Yet vaccines have eradicated smallpox and antibiotics have drastically decreased the mortality rate of many infectious agents. These remarkable successes in the control of infections came from knowing the causative agents of the diseases, followed by serendipitous discoveries of attenuated viruses and antibiotics. The discovery of DNA as genetic material and the understanding of how this information translates into specific phenotypes have changed the paradigm for developing new vaccines, drugs, and diagnostic tests. Knowledge of the mechanisms of immunity and mechanisms of action of drugs has led to new vaccines and new antimicrobial agents. The key to the acquisition of the knowledge of these mechanisms has been identifying the elemental causes (i.e., genes and their products) that mediate immunity and drug resistance. The identification of these genes is made possible by being able to transfer the genes or mutated forms of the genes into causative agents or surrogate hosts. Such an approach was limited in Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the difficulty of transferring genes or alleles into M. tuberculosis or a suitable surrogate mycobacterial host. The construction of shuttle phasmids-chimeric molecules that replicate in Escherichia coli as plasmids and in mycobacteria as mycobacteriophages-was instrumental in developing gene transfer systems for M. tuberculosis. This review will discuss M. tuberculosis genetic systems and their impact on tuberculosis research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberMGM2-0037-2013
JournalMicrobiology Spectrum
Volume2
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Fingerprint

tuberculosis
gene transfer
Mycobacterium tuberculosis
vaccine
gene
Genes
immunity
antibiotics
Vaccines
drug
smallpox
drug resistance
Immunity
Mycobacteriophages
infectious disease
plasmid
Anti-Bacterial Agents
phenotype
public health
Smallpox

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Ecology
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Genetics
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology
  • Infectious Diseases

Cite this

Gene Transfer in Mycobacterium tuberculosis : Shuttle Phasmids to Enlightenment. / Jacobs, William R.

In: Microbiology Spectrum, Vol. 2, No. 2, MGM2-0037-2013, 01.01.2014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{3a1859dd9f0e4db8b606ddfe825ac0cd,
title = "Gene Transfer in Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Shuttle Phasmids to Enlightenment",
abstract = "Infectious diseases have plagued humankind throughout history and have posed serious public health problems. Yet vaccines have eradicated smallpox and antibiotics have drastically decreased the mortality rate of many infectious agents. These remarkable successes in the control of infections came from knowing the causative agents of the diseases, followed by serendipitous discoveries of attenuated viruses and antibiotics. The discovery of DNA as genetic material and the understanding of how this information translates into specific phenotypes have changed the paradigm for developing new vaccines, drugs, and diagnostic tests. Knowledge of the mechanisms of immunity and mechanisms of action of drugs has led to new vaccines and new antimicrobial agents. The key to the acquisition of the knowledge of these mechanisms has been identifying the elemental causes (i.e., genes and their products) that mediate immunity and drug resistance. The identification of these genes is made possible by being able to transfer the genes or mutated forms of the genes into causative agents or surrogate hosts. Such an approach was limited in Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the difficulty of transferring genes or alleles into M. tuberculosis or a suitable surrogate mycobacterial host. The construction of shuttle phasmids-chimeric molecules that replicate in Escherichia coli as plasmids and in mycobacteria as mycobacteriophages-was instrumental in developing gene transfer systems for M. tuberculosis. This review will discuss M. tuberculosis genetic systems and their impact on tuberculosis research.",
author = "Jacobs, {William R.}",
year = "2014",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1128/microbiolspec.MGM2-0037-2013",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "2",
journal = "Microbiology spectrum",
issn = "2165-0497",
publisher = "American Society for Microbiology",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Gene Transfer in Mycobacterium tuberculosis

T2 - Shuttle Phasmids to Enlightenment

AU - Jacobs, William R.

PY - 2014/1/1

Y1 - 2014/1/1

N2 - Infectious diseases have plagued humankind throughout history and have posed serious public health problems. Yet vaccines have eradicated smallpox and antibiotics have drastically decreased the mortality rate of many infectious agents. These remarkable successes in the control of infections came from knowing the causative agents of the diseases, followed by serendipitous discoveries of attenuated viruses and antibiotics. The discovery of DNA as genetic material and the understanding of how this information translates into specific phenotypes have changed the paradigm for developing new vaccines, drugs, and diagnostic tests. Knowledge of the mechanisms of immunity and mechanisms of action of drugs has led to new vaccines and new antimicrobial agents. The key to the acquisition of the knowledge of these mechanisms has been identifying the elemental causes (i.e., genes and their products) that mediate immunity and drug resistance. The identification of these genes is made possible by being able to transfer the genes or mutated forms of the genes into causative agents or surrogate hosts. Such an approach was limited in Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the difficulty of transferring genes or alleles into M. tuberculosis or a suitable surrogate mycobacterial host. The construction of shuttle phasmids-chimeric molecules that replicate in Escherichia coli as plasmids and in mycobacteria as mycobacteriophages-was instrumental in developing gene transfer systems for M. tuberculosis. This review will discuss M. tuberculosis genetic systems and their impact on tuberculosis research.

AB - Infectious diseases have plagued humankind throughout history and have posed serious public health problems. Yet vaccines have eradicated smallpox and antibiotics have drastically decreased the mortality rate of many infectious agents. These remarkable successes in the control of infections came from knowing the causative agents of the diseases, followed by serendipitous discoveries of attenuated viruses and antibiotics. The discovery of DNA as genetic material and the understanding of how this information translates into specific phenotypes have changed the paradigm for developing new vaccines, drugs, and diagnostic tests. Knowledge of the mechanisms of immunity and mechanisms of action of drugs has led to new vaccines and new antimicrobial agents. The key to the acquisition of the knowledge of these mechanisms has been identifying the elemental causes (i.e., genes and their products) that mediate immunity and drug resistance. The identification of these genes is made possible by being able to transfer the genes or mutated forms of the genes into causative agents or surrogate hosts. Such an approach was limited in Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the difficulty of transferring genes or alleles into M. tuberculosis or a suitable surrogate mycobacterial host. The construction of shuttle phasmids-chimeric molecules that replicate in Escherichia coli as plasmids and in mycobacteria as mycobacteriophages-was instrumental in developing gene transfer systems for M. tuberculosis. This review will discuss M. tuberculosis genetic systems and their impact on tuberculosis research.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84959018955&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84959018955&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1128/microbiolspec.MGM2-0037-2013

DO - 10.1128/microbiolspec.MGM2-0037-2013

M3 - Article

C2 - 26105819

AN - SCOPUS:84959018955

VL - 2

JO - Microbiology spectrum

JF - Microbiology spectrum

SN - 2165-0497

IS - 2

M1 - MGM2-0037-2013

ER -