Localized sex in bacteria

Nature. 1991 Jan 3;349(6304):29-31. doi: 10.1038/349029a0.


Electrophoretic studies suggest that bacterial populations consist of a number of independent clones and that genetic recombination is rare in nature. But DNA sequencing reveals that individual bacterial genes have a mosaic structure that could have arisen only by recombination. How can these observations be reconciled and what is their relevance to prokaryotic evolution?

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / genetics*
  • Conjugation, Genetic
  • DNA, Bacterial / chemistry*
  • Recombination, Genetic / genetics*
  • Species Specificity
  • Transformation, Bacterial / genetics*


  • DNA, Bacterial