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Enzymatic Control of Cell Division in Micro-Organisms*

Nature volume 162, pages 241245 (14 August 1948) | Download Citation

Abstract

FROM lines of evidence converging from apparently widely separated fields it now appears possible to assemble evidence indicating that cell division in micro-organisms, and probably also in other organisms, is under the control of a unit enzymatic mechanism. The lines of investigation, developed quite independently, forming the foundations for this thesis are : (1) physico-chemical studies by Hinshelwood and co-workers1 on the kinetics of bacterial growth and the state of balance between division and elongation ; (2) the studies of Witkin2 (genetic), Eisenstark and Clark3 (electron microscope), and others20,21,22 on irradiated bacteria ; (3) cytochemical investigations of Pratt and Dufrenoy4 on the mode of action of penicillin ; (4) metabolic studies on dimorphic pathogenic fungi by Nickerson and Edwards5 ; and (5) examination of the chemical control of morphogenesis in yeasts by Jillson and Nickerson6, the common denominator in all of these lines of investigation being a close examination of the effects of inimical or critical conditions on the morphogenesis of dividing cells. The examinations have revealed a common fundamental attribute of cell division of micro-organisms.

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Author information

Affiliations

  1. (John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellow)

  2. Laboratorium voor Microbiologie, Delft

Authors

  1. Search for WALTER J. NICKERSON in:

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DOI

https://doi.org/10.1038/162241a0

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