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Why Do We Have to Learn This Stuff?”—A New Genetics for 21st Century Students

  • Rosemary J. Redfield mail

    Affiliation: Department of Zoology, Life Sciences Institute, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

  • Published: July 03, 2012
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001356

Reader Comments (25)

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Bacterial Genetics

Posted by Baltrus on 03 Jul 2012 at 23:32 GMT

Hi Rosie,

So (out of curiosity, not disfavor) where do transformation, conjugation, and transduction go? A more specialized microbial genetics course?

No competing interests declared.

RE: Bacterial Genetics

redfield replied to Baltrus on 04 Jul 2012 at 14:25 GMT

As processes that happen in bacteria, and as causes of gene transfer, yes, they could be introduced in an intro microbiology course. They all should first be taught as processes with their own functions (DNA uptake, infectious transfer of phage and plasmids), before their ability to move chromosomal genes is explained.

As laboratory techniques still sometimes used for bacterial strain construction, they should be taught only in an advanced bacterial genetics course.

No competing interests declared.