Streptomycin Dependent Mutant
Country: United States
Date: May 2005
I used to read a scientific article and came across a phrase "streptomycin
dependent mutant". My question is how this bug can not grow without the
antibiotic streptomycin? What is molecular basis of this phenotype?
How is such mutant created?
Streptomycin kills bacteria by binding to one of the proteins comprising
ribosomes and in so doing inhibits protein synthesis. Mutations (resulting
in aminn acid subsittutions in the ribosomal proteins) is one of the ways in
which bacteria become resistant to streptomycin. Sometimes these mutations
result in a ribosomal protein that requires the binding of streptomycin to
the protein in order for the protein to properly function during protein
synthesis and thus the bacterium is dependent on the binding of streptomycin
to the ribosome.
Ron Baker, Ph.D.
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Update: June 2012