Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Review
. 2009;532:29-53.
doi: 10.1007/978-1-60327-853-9_3.

The Interplay of Homologous Recombination and Horizontal Gene Transfer in Bacterial Speciation

Affiliations
Review

The Interplay of Homologous Recombination and Horizontal Gene Transfer in Bacterial Speciation

Jeffrey G Lawrence et al. Methods Mol Biol. .

Abstract

Bacteria experience recombination in two ways. In the context of the Biological Species concept, allelic exchange purges genic variability within bacterial populations as gene exchange mediates selective sweeps. In contrast, horizontal gene transfer (HGT) increases the size of the population's pan-genome by providing an influx of novel genetic material. Here we discuss the interplay of these two processes, with an emphasis on how they allow for the maintenance of genotypically cohesive bacterial populations, yet allow for the separation of these populations upon bacterial speciation. In populations that maintain genotypic similarity by frequent allelic exchange, horizontally transferred genes may initiate ecological barriers to genetic exchange. The resulting recombination interference allows for the accumulation of neutral mutations and, consequently, the imposition of a pre-mating barrier to gene transfer.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 27 articles

See all "Cited by" articles

Publication types

LinkOut - more resources

Feedback