Bacteriophage recombination systems and biotechnical applications

Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2014 Apr;98(7):2841-51. doi: 10.1007/s00253-014-5512-2. Epub 2014 Jan 19.

Abstract

Bacteriophage recombination systems have been widely used in biotechnology for modifying prokaryotic species, for creating transgenic animals and plants, and more recently, for human cell gene manipulation. In contrast to homologous recombination, which benefits from the endogenous recombination machinery of the cell, site-specific recombination requires an exogenous source of recombinase in mammalian cells. The mechanism of bacteriophage evolution and their coexistence with bacterial cells has become a point of interest ever since bacterial viruses' life cycles were first explored. Phage recombinases have already been exploited as valuable genetic tools and new phage enzymes, and their potential application to genetic engineering and genome manipulation, vectorology, and generation of new transgene delivery vectors, and cell therapy are attractive areas of research that continue to be investigated. The significance and role of phage recombination systems in biotechnology is reviewed in this paper, with specific focus on homologous and site-specific recombination conferred by the coli phages, λ, and N15, the integrase from the Streptomyces phage, ΦC31, the recombination system of phage P1, and the recently characterized recombination functions of Yersinia phage, PY54. Key steps of the molecular mechanisms involving phage recombination functions and their application to molecular engineering, our novel exploitations of the PY54-derived recombination system, and its application to the development of new DNA vectors are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacteriophages / enzymology*
  • Bacteriophages / genetics*
  • Biotechnology / methods*
  • Genetic Engineering / methods*
  • Recombinases / metabolism*
  • Recombination, Genetic*

Substances

  • Recombinases