transductionmedical dictionary

1. <molecular biology> The transfer of a gene from one bacterium to another by a bacteriophage.

In generalised transduction any gene may be transferred as a result of accidental incorporation during phage packaging. In specialised transduction only specific genes can be transferred, as a result of improper recombination out of the host chromosome of the prophage of a lysogenic phage.

Transduction is an infrequent event but transducing phages have proved useful in the genetic analysis of bacteria.

2. <biology, physics> The conversion of a signal from one form to another.

For example: various types of sensory cells convert or transduce light, pressure, chemicals, etc. Into nerve impulses and the binding of many hormones to receptors at the cell surface is transduced into an increase in cAMP within the cell.

(17 Mar 1998)