Bishal Paul posted an Question
August 06, 2021 • 11:50 am 30 points
  • Life Sciences

How bacteriophages help in genetic exchange between microbial cell?

1 Answer(s) Answer Now
  • Priya sarda Best Answer

    A bacteriophage is a type of virus that infects bacteria. In fact, the word "bacteriophage" literally means "bacteria eater," because bacteriophages destroy their host cells. ... A bacteriophage attaches itself to a susceptible bacterium and infects the host cell. Bacteriophage enzymes destroy the bacterial cell wall from both outside and inside by hydrolyzing carbohydrate and protein components. All these proteins protect phage genetic material, secure injection of the phage nucleic acid into the bacterial cell, and promote phage propagation. If the new phages attach to other bacteria and the DNA becomes incorporated into bacterial DNA, new genetic types of bacteria may be produced. This process, in which bacteriophages assist in the genetic recombination of bacteria, is known as transduction. Transduction is the transfer of DNA from one bacterium to another by means of a bacteria-infecting virus called a bacteriophage. Transduction is an efficient means of transferring DNA between bacteria because DNA enclosed in the bacteriophage is protected from physical decay and from attack by enzymes in the environment and is injected directly into cells by the bacteriophage. However, widespread gene transfer by means of transduction is of limited significance because the packaging of bacterial DNA into a virus is inefficient and the bacteriophages are usually highly restricted in the range of bacterial species that they can infect. Thus, interspecies transfer of DNA by transduction is rare.


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