Management of multipartite genomes: the Vibrio cholerae model

Curr Opin Microbiol. 2014 Dec;22:120-6. doi: 10.1016/j.mib.2014.10.003.


A minority of bacterial species has been found to carry a genome divided among several chromosomes. Among these, all Vibrio species harbor a genome split into two chromosomes of uneven size, with distinctive replication origins whose replication firing involves common and specific factors. Most of our current knowledge on replication and segregation in multi-chromosome bacteria has come from the study of Vibrio cholerae, which is now the model organism for this field. It has been firmly established that replication of the two V. cholerae chromosomes is temporally regulated and coupled to the cell cycle, but the mediators of these processes are as yet mostly unknown. The two chromosomes are also organized along different patterns within the cell and occupy different subcellular domains. The selective advantages provided by this partitioning into two replicons are still unclear and are a key motivation for these studies.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Cell Cycle / physiology
  • Chromosome Segregation
  • Chromosomes, Bacterial / genetics
  • Chromosomes, Bacterial / metabolism
  • DNA Replication
  • Genome, Bacterial*
  • Replication Origin
  • Vibrio cholerae / genetics*
  • Vibrio cholerae / metabolism*