1. Genetics and Genomics
  2. Microbiology and Infectious Disease
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Bacterial Warfare: Toxins, mutations and adaptations

  1. Maarten De Jong
  2. Neal M Alto  Is a corresponding author
  1. Department of Microbiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, United States
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Cite this article as: eLife 2021;10:e66676 doi: 10.7554/eLife.66676
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The DddA toxin from B. cenocepacia affects other bacterial species in different ways.

DddA is a toxin that removes an amino group from cytosine (C; green), converting it into uracil (U; yellow) in chromosomal DNA (top). In some bacterial species uracil is then removed by the DNA repair machinery (left), which can lead to double-stranded DNA breaks and ultimately cell death. In bacteria resistant to the toxic effects of DddA, DNA breaks do not occur (right): instead, uracil is converted into thymine (T; orange), which causes guanine (G; red) to convert to adenosine (A; blue). This results in genetic variation within the targeted population, further diversifying the community of bacteria.

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