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Properties of the Deoxyribonucleic Acid Contained in the Defective Particle Coliphage 15 1

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  • Physics


Escherichia coli strain 15 TAU, which requires thymine, arginine, and uracil for growth and harbors an apparently defective prophage, was induced by exposure to ultraviolet light (580 ergs/mm2) or to mitomycin C (5 μg/ml). Phage particles (coliphage 15) were recovered from the resulting lysate by treatment with deoxyribonuclease, filtration, and several cycles of differential centrifugation. Analysis of the phage particles obtained by using cesium chloride density gradient centrifugation in a preparative ultracentrifuge resulted in the resolution of three components. The major component had a peak density of 1.52 to 1.53 g/cm3 followed by components with densities of 1.5 and 1.49 g/cm3. The guanine plus cytosine content of coliphage 15 deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) was determined by both analytical ultracentrifugation in cesium chloride and by thermal denaturation in standard saline citrate buffer. Respective values of 46.4 ± 1% and 46.6 ± 1% guanine plus cytosine content were obtained. Coliphage 15 DNA formed molecular hybrids with messenger ribonucleic acid (RNA) from both uninduced and ultraviolet-induced cultures of E. coli 15 TAU, but did not hybridize with E. coli ribosomal RNA. The molecular weight of coliphage 15 DNA was determined by constant velocity sucrose density gradient centrifugation to be about 33 × 106 daltons.


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