Duplication and amplification of toxin genes in Vibrio cholerae

Cell. 1983 Nov;35(1):253-63. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(83)90228-3.


Vibrio cholerae strains of the classical biotype all contain two widely separated copies of the cholera toxin operon ctxAB. In contrast, EI Tor strains containing multiple copies of ctx have their copies arranged on large tandem repeats which are either 7 or 9.7 kb in length. The variation in size among these large tandem duplications was due to a difference in the copy number of a smaller, 2.7 kb, tandemly repeated sequence (RS1) that is located at the novel joint of these duplications, as well as upstream and downstream of ctx. Southern blot hybridization analysis indicated that amplification of a DNA region carrying ctx and flanked by direct repeats of RS1 may be responsible for the hypertoxinogenic phenotype of EI Tor variants selected by intraintestinal growth in rabbits.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cholera Toxin / genetics*
  • Gene Amplification*
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Intestines / microbiology
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization
  • Operon*
  • Rabbits
  • Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid
  • Vibrio cholerae / genetics*
  • Vibrio cholerae / growth & development


  • Cholera Toxin