Aphidicolin-resistant mutants of bacteriophage phi 29: genetic evidence for altered DNA polymerase.

Abstract:

Aphidicolin-resistant mutants (Aphr) of Bacillus subtilis bacteriophage phi 29 were isolated after mutagenesis with hydroxylamine. Efficiency of plating (e.o.p.) of the resistant mutants was not reduced at 500 microM aphidicolin, although e.o.p. of wild type phi 29 was less than 10(-5) at the same concentration of aphidicolin. By recombination and complementation analyses, both sites of the mutations, aph-71 and aph-101, of Aphr71 and Aphr101, respectively, were mapped in gene 2 which encodes phi 29 DNA polymerase. The activity of wild type phi 29 DNA polymerase, in a partially purified fraction, was inhibited by aphidicolin. DNA polymerases from Aphr71 and Aphr101, prepared in the same manner as that of wild type, were resistant to the drug. These results indicate that the acquisition of the aphidicolin resistance of Aphr71 and Aphr101 of bacteriophage phi 29 results from a structural alteration of phi 29 DNA polymerase which reduces sensitivity to aphidicolin.

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