Bacteriophages use an expanded genetic code on evolutionary paths to higher fitness

Michael J. Hammerling, Jared W. Ellefson, Daniel R. Boutz, Edward M. Marcotte, Andrew D. Ellington, Jeffrey E. Barrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Bioengineering advances have made it possible to fundamentally alter the genetic codes of organisms. However, the evolutionary consequences of expanding an organism's genetic code with a noncanonical amino acid are poorly understood. Here we show that bacteriophages evolved on a host that incorporates 3-iodotyrosine at the amber stop codon acquire neutral and beneficial mutations to this new amino acid in their proteins, demonstrating that an expanded genetic code increases evolvability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)178-180
Number of pages3
JournalNature Chemical Biology
Volume10
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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