HIS3 cloning

Mark Johnston mj at sequencer.wustl.edu
Wed Jan 19 14:36:19 EST 1994

Michael Benedik asked:

>Can the HIS3 gene (S.C.) complement his- E.coli mutants? and if so
>which E.coli his- mutant?

An interesting question.  I thought all of you who are not aware of the
history of recombinant DNA might be interested in the answer.  

My understanding is that HIS3 was the _first_ eukaryotic gene cloned by
complementation (see Struhl et al., PNAS 73:1471 (1976) and Struhl and
Davis, PNAS 74:5255 (1977)).  This was in the days before we could
transform yeast with DNA, so E. coli was used.  The E. coli mutant was hisB
(IGP dehydratase deficient).   John Carbon's lab made a similar achievement
at about the same time (Ratzkin and Carbon, PNAS 74:487 (1977)).

        Mark Johnston
        Department of Genetics Box 8232
        Washington University Medical School
        4566 Scott Ave.
        St. Louis, MO  63110
        FAX:   314-362-2985
        TEL:    314-362-2735
        E-mail:  mj at sequencer.wustl.edu  

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