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Mode of Action

Chloramphenicol is a bacteriostatic agent that binds to the 50S ribosomal subunit and inhibits ribosomal peptide bond formation. It is sometimes used as a way of "amplifying" plasmid production by shutting down protein synthesis in cultures, while allowing plasmid replication to continue.

Working Concentrations and Stock Solutions

High copy plasmids allow 35 μg/ml concentration. Low-copy plasmids like bacterial artificial chromosomes allow 12.5 μg/ml. Stock solutions can be made at 35 mg/ml in ethanol, kept at -20C.

Resistance Gene

The cat gene codes for an acetyltransferase which acetylates chloramphenicol, inactivating it. The gene is sometimes specifed as CmR or CamR.


Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI) - BAC/PAC resources