Summary: Transposon mutagenesis in a tomato isolate of (strain Kourou) is reported, using Tn and Tn inserted in suicide conjugative plasmids. Whereas Tn integrates at high frequency in a particular site of the the genome, Tn appears to transpose much more randomly, allowing isolation of auxotrophic mutants with a frequency of 035%. The mutants showed a wide range of nutritional requirements. Following Tn mutagenesis, screening of 8250 clones on axenic tomato seedlings led to the isolation of 12 avirulent mutants. Southern blot analysis revealed that, for avirulent mutants, insertion of Tn occurred in at least 10 different RI restriction fragments. Additional independent insertions of IS were also detected in four of these mutants. For each mutant, transformation experiments demonstrated that the Tn-encoded kanamycin resistance and the avirulent phenotype are linked. Based on their ability or inability to induce a collapse of tobacco leaf parenchyma, and on the timing of reaction of the plant, avirulent mutants have been divided in to two and possibly three groups.


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