Insertion-Duplication Mutagenesis inStreptococcus pneumoniae: Targeting Fragment Length Is a Critical Parameter in Use as a Random Insertion Tool
Applied and Environmental Microbiology
To examine whether insertion-duplication mutagenesis with chimeric DNA as a transformation donor could be valuable as a gene knockout tool for genomic analysis in Streptococcus pneumoniae, we studied the transformation efficiency and targeting specificity of the process by using a nonreplicative vector with homologous targeting inserts of various sizes. Insertional recombination was very specific in targeting homologous sites. While the recombination rate did not depend on which site or region
... ich site or region was targeted, it did depend strongly on the size of the targeting insert in the donor plasmid, in proportion to the fifth power of its length for inserts of 100 to 500 bp. The dependence of insertion-duplication events on the length of the targeting homology was quite different from that for linear allele replacement and places certain limits on the design of mutagenesis experiments. The number of independent pneumococcal targeting fragments of uniform size required to knock out any desired fraction of the genes in a model genome with a defined probability was calculated from these data by using a combinatorial theory with simplifying assumptions. The results show that efficient and thorough mutagenesis of a large part of the pneumococcal genome should be practical when using insertion-duplication mutagenesis.