Systematic identification and quantification of phase variation in commensal and pathogenic Escherichia coli

Amir Goldberg, Ofer Fridman, Irine Ronin, Nathalie Q. Balaban*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Bacteria have been shown to generate constant genetic variation in a process termed phase variation. We present a tool based on whole genome sequencing that allows detection and quantification of coexisting genotypes mediated by genomic inversions in bacterial cultures. We tested our method on widely used strains of Escherichia coli, and detected stable and reproducible phase variation in several invertible loci. These are shown here to be responsible for maintaining constant variation in populations grown from a single colony. Applying this tool on other bacterial strains can shed light on how pathogens adjust to hostile environments by diversifying their genomes.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number112
JournalGenome Medicine
Volume6
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - 28 Nov 2014

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Goldberg et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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