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The Chinese Journal of Dental Research

Year 2004
Volume 7 , Issue 3

Pages: 29 - 34

Conscruction of Mutant Streptococcus Mutans Defective in Acid Tolerance

Hua Wel/Mingwen Fan/Zhung Bian/Ping Zhang

Objective: To construct an acid-sensitive mutant of Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans) UA159 by transposon mutangenesis in order to study the gene related to the acid tolerance. Methods: The transposon Tn917 was delivered into S. mutans UA159 and transposition was inducted. Transporsants harboring Tn917 in the chromosome were screened for the selection of mutant which had diminished growth at low pH. Southern analysis and genetic backcross experiment were performed to determine the linkage of Tn917 insertion to the mutant phenotype (acid-sensitivity). Comparison of the abilities to grow at low pH and the glycolytic pH drop and the killing pH was done between an acid-sensitive mutant and the parent strain. Results: One mutant that showed no growth at pH5.0 was isolated. Southern analysis and genetic backcross experiment confirmed the linkage between single Tn917 insertion into the chromosome and the phenotypic change (acid sensitive). The mutant is less acid tolerant than the parent strain in that it showed poorer growth at low pH and higher glycolytic pH minimum and higher killing pH. Conclusion: The successful construction of an acid-sensitive mutant of S. mutans provides a solid foundation to recover the gene related to the acid tolerance of S. mutans.



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