Characterization of LuxA of novel strains of the genus Shewanella

Document Type



Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor's Name

John C. Makemson

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

David N. Kuhn

Third Advisor's Name

Ronald Jones


Luminous bacteria, Shewanella

Date of Defense



Bioluminescence is a trait observed among different genera and families of bacteria. In this study part of the luxA gene was characterized from the new MS isolates and compared to luxA of other bacteria. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to amplify a fragment of the luxA gene of strain MS32 and Vibrio harveyi. These fragments were used as probes in hybridization experiments with luminous and nonluminous bacteria. The results from these experiments suggest that some nonluminous species may possess lux like regions in their chromosomal DNA and that luxA probes can demonstrate species identity. The MS32 luxA fragment was also sequenced and used in a phylogenetic analysis to identify the taxonomic affinities of MS strains. It was found that MS1 and MS32 were closely related, however, Shewanella hanedai was not. Thus there was a concordance between the phenotypic and genotypic approaches, which will help in establishing a consistent taxonomic affinity between these bacteria.



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