Cytoplasmic inheritance of chloramphenicol resistance in mouse tissue culture cells

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1974 May;71(5):1681-5. doi: 10.1073/pnas.71.5.1681.


A chloramphenicol-resistant mutant, isolated from mouse A9 cells, was enucleated and fused with a nucleated chloramphenicol-sensitive mouse cell line. Resultant fusion products, cytoplasmic hybrids (or "cybrids"), were selected as resistant to chloramphenicol, and had the nuclear markers and chromosome complement of the chloramphenicol-sensitive parent. These cybrids appeared at the high frequency of 2-8 per 10(4) cells plated. Neither parent produced any colonies when plated under identical selective conditions. Fusion between enucleated chloramphenicol-sensitive cell fragments and the chloramphenicol-sensitive cell produced no resistant colonies, suggesting that chloramphenicol resistance is not due to an increase in the ratio of cytoplasm to nucleus. Furthermore, fusions between resistant and sensitive nucleated cells produced resistant hybrids at a frequency 100 times less than that of resistant cybrids. Thus, these stable chloramphenicol-resistant cybrids result from the fusion of a chloramphenicol-resistant cytoplasm with a chloramphenicol-sensitive cell. It is proposed, therefore, that chloramphenicol resistance is a cytoplasmically inherited characteristic in this mouse cell line.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chloramphenicol*
  • Clone Cells
  • Drug Resistance*
  • Extrachromosomal Inheritance*
  • Hybrid Cells
  • L Cells
  • Mice
  • Time Factors


  • Chloramphenicol