Journal of Bacteriology
American Society for Microbiology
No useful method to genetically manipulate Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, has been developed previously. We have used resistance to the coumarin antibiotic coumermycin A1, an inhibitor of DNA gyrase, as a genetic marker to monitor the transformation of B. burgdorferi by electroporation. Introduction of site-directed mutations into the gyrB gene demonstrated that transformation was successful, provided evidence that homologous recombination occurs on the chromosome, and established that mutations at Arg-133 of DNA gyrase B confer coumermycin A1 resistance in B. burgdorferi. The coumermycin A1-resistant gyrB marker and genetic transformation can now be applied toward dissecting the physiology and pathogenesis of the Lyme disease agent on a molecular genetic level.
Copyright 1994, American Society for Microbiology