F Factor: A plasmid whose presence in the cell, either extrachromosomal or integrated into the BACTERIAL CHROMOSOME, determines the "sex" of the bacterium, host chromosome mobilization, transfer via conjugation (CONJUGATION, GENETIC) of genetic material, and the formation of SEX PILI.Sex: The totality of characteristics of reproductive structure, functions, PHENOTYPE, and GENOTYPE, differentiating the MALE from the FEMALE organism.Conjugation, Genetic: A parasexual process in BACTERIA; ALGAE; FUNGI; and ciliate EUKARYOTA for achieving exchange of chromosome material during fusion of two cells. In bacteria, this is a uni-directional transfer of genetic material; in protozoa it is a bi-directional exchange. In algae and fungi, it is a form of sexual reproduction, with the union of male and female gametes.Extrachromosomal Inheritance: Vertical transmission of hereditary characters by DNA from cytoplasmic organelles such as MITOCHONDRIA; CHLOROPLASTS; and PLASTIDS, or from PLASMIDS or viral episomal DNA.AcridinesEscherichia coli: A species of gram-negative, facultatively anaerobic, rod-shaped bacteria (GRAM-NEGATIVE FACULTATIVELY ANAEROBIC RODS) commonly found in the lower part of the intestine of warm-blooded animals. It is usually nonpathogenic, but some strains are known to produce DIARRHEA and pyogenic infections. Pathogenic strains (virotypes) are classified by their specific pathogenic mechanisms such as toxins (ENTEROTOXIGENIC ESCHERICHIA COLI), etc.Genetics, Microbial: A subdiscipline of genetics which deals with the genetic mechanisms and processes of microorganisms.Coliphages: Viruses whose host is Escherichia coli.Chromosomes, Bacterial: Structures within the nucleus of bacterial cells consisting of or containing DNA, which carry genetic information essential to the cell.Lactose: A disaccharide of GLUCOSE and GALACTOSE in human and cow milk. It is used in pharmacy for tablets, in medicine as a nutrient, and in industry.DNA, Bacterial: Deoxyribonucleic acid that makes up the genetic material of bacteria.Sex Factors: Maleness or femaleness as a constituent element or influence contributing to the production of a result. It may be applicable to the cause or effect of a circumstance. It is used with human or animal concepts but should be differentiated from SEX CHARACTERISTICS, anatomical or physiological manifestations of sex, and from SEX DISTRIBUTION, the number of males and females in given circumstances.R Factors: A class of plasmids that transfer antibiotic resistance from one bacterium to another by conjugation.Sex Characteristics: Those characteristics that distinguish one SEX from the other. The primary sex characteristics are the OVARIES and TESTES and their related hormones. Secondary sex characteristics are those which are masculine or feminine but not directly related to reproduction.Recombination, Genetic: Production of new arrangements of DNA by various mechanisms such as assortment and segregation, CROSSING OVER; GENE CONVERSION; GENETIC TRANSFORMATION; GENETIC CONJUGATION; GENETIC TRANSDUCTION; or mixed infection of viruses.Genes: A category of nucleic acid sequences that function as units of heredity and which code for the basic instructions for the development, reproduction, and maintenance of organisms.Lysogeny: The phenomenon by which a temperate phage incorporates itself into the DNA of a bacterial host, establishing a kind of symbiotic relation between PROPHAGE and bacterium which results in the perpetuation of the prophage in all the descendants of the bacterium. Upon induction (VIRUS ACTIVATION) by various agents, such as ultraviolet radiation, the phage is released, which then becomes virulent and lyses the bacterium.Mutation: Any detectable and heritable change in the genetic material that causes a change in the GENOTYPE and which is transmitted to daughter cells and to succeeding generations.Crosses, Genetic: Deliberate breeding of two different individuals that results in offspring that carry part of the genetic material of each parent. The parent organisms must be genetically compatible and may be from different varieties or closely related species.Lactococcus lactis: A non-pathogenic species of LACTOCOCCUS found in DAIRY PRODUCTS and responsible for the souring of MILK and the production of LACTIC ACID.Drug Resistance, Microbial: The ability of microorganisms, especially bacteria, to resist or to become tolerant to chemotherapeutic agents, antimicrobial agents, or antibiotics. This resistance may be acquired through gene mutation or foreign DNA in transmissible plasmids (R FACTORS).DNA, Circular: Any of the covalently closed DNA molecules found in bacteria, many viruses, mitochondria, plastids, and plasmids. Small, polydisperse circular DNA's have also been observed in a number of eukaryotic organisms and are suggested to have homology with chromosomal DNA and the capacity to be inserted into, and excised from, chromosomal DNA. It is a fragment of DNA formed by a process of looping out and deletion, containing a constant region of the mu heavy chain and the 3'-part of the mu switch region. Circular DNA is a normal product of rearrangement among gene segments encoding the variable regions of immunoglobulin light and heavy chains, as well as the T-cell receptor. (Riger et al., Glossary of Genetics, 5th ed & Segen, Dictionary of Modern Medicine, 1992)Plasmids: Extrachromosomal, usually CIRCULAR DNA molecules that are self-replicating and transferable from one organism to another. They are found in a variety of bacterial, archaeal, fungal, algal, and plant species. They are used in GENETIC ENGINEERING as CLONING VECTORS.Culture Media: Any liquid or solid preparation made specifically for the growth, storage, or transport of microorganisms or other types of cells. The variety of media that exist allow for the culturing of specific microorganisms and cell types, such as differential media, selective media, test media, and defined media. Solid media consist of liquid media that have been solidified with an agent such as AGAR or GELATIN.Transduction, Genetic: The transfer of bacterial DNA by phages from an infected bacterium to another bacterium. This also refers to the transfer of genes into eukaryotic cells by viruses. This naturally occurring process is routinely employed as a GENE TRANSFER TECHNIQUE.Chromosome Mapping: Any method used for determining the location of and relative distances between genes on a chromosome.DNA Restriction Enzymes: Enzymes that are part of the restriction-modification systems. They catalyze the endonucleolytic cleavage of DNA sequences which lack the species-specific methylation pattern in the host cell's DNA. Cleavage yields random or specific double-stranded fragments with terminal 5'-phosphates. The function of restriction enzymes is to destroy any foreign DNA that invades the host cell. Most have been studied in bacterial systems, but a few have been found in eukaryotic organisms. They are also used as tools for the systematic dissection and mapping of chromosomes, in the determination of base sequences of DNAs, and have made it possible to splice and recombine genes from one organism into the genome of another. EC 3.21.1.Operon: In bacteria, a group of metabolically related genes, with a common promoter, whose transcription into a single polycistronic MESSENGER RNA is under the control of an OPERATOR REGION.Bacterial Proteins: Proteins found in any species of bacterium.Chromosomes: In a prokaryotic cell or in the nucleus of a eukaryotic cell, a structure consisting of or containing DNA which carries the genetic information essential to the cell. (From Singleton & Sainsbury, Dictionary of Microbiology and Molecular Biology, 2d ed)Sex Chromosomes: The homologous chromosomes that are dissimilar in the heterogametic sex. There are the X CHROMOSOME, the Y CHROMOSOME, and the W, Z chromosomes (in animals in which the female is the heterogametic sex (the silkworm moth Bombyx mori, for example)). In such cases the W chromosome is the female-determining and the male is ZZ. (From King & Stansfield, A Dictionary of Genetics, 4th ed)Sex Determination Processes: The mechanisms by which the SEX of an individual's GONADS are fixed.Unsafe Sex: Sexual behaviors which are high-risk for contracting SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES or for producing PREGNANCY.Genes, Bacterial: The functional hereditary units of BACTERIA.Sex Workers: People who engage in occupational sexual behavior in exchange for economic rewards or other extrinsic considerations.Sex Differentiation: The process in developing sex- or gender-specific tissue, organ, or function after SEX DETERMINATION PROCESSES have set the sex of the GONADS. Major areas of sex differentiation occur in the reproductive tract (GENITALIA) and the brain.Safe Sex: Sexual behavior that prevents or reduces the spread of SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES or PREGNANCY.Sex Attractants: Pheromones that elicit sexual attraction or mating behavior usually in members of the opposite sex in the same species.Sex Determination Analysis: Validation of the SEX of an individual by inspection of the GONADS and/or by genetic tests.Sex Distribution: The number of males and females in a given population. The distribution may refer to how many men or women or what proportion of either in the group. The population is usually patients with a specific disease but the concept is not restricted to humans and is not restricted to medicine.Disorders of Sex Development: In gonochoristic organisms, congenital conditions in which development of chromosomal, gonadal, or anatomical sex is atypical. Effects from exposure to abnormal levels of GONADAL HORMONES in the maternal environment, or disruption of the function of those hormones by ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS are included.Sex Preselection: Methods for controlling genetic SEX of offspring.Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin: A glycoprotein migrating as a beta-globulin. Its molecular weight, 52,000 or 95,000-115,000, indicates that it exists as a dimer. The protein binds testosterone, dihydrotestosterone, and estradiol in the plasma. Sex hormone-binding protein has the same amino acid sequence as ANDROGEN-BINDING PROTEIN. They differ by their sites of synthesis and post-translational oligosaccharide modifications.Sex Counseling: Advice and support given to individuals to help them understand and resolve their sexual adjustment problems. It excludes treatment for PSYCHOSEXUAL DISORDERS or PSYCHOSEXUAL DYSFUNCTION.Gonadal Steroid Hormones: Steroid hormones produced by the GONADS. They stimulate reproductive organs, germ cell maturation, and the secondary sex characteristics in the males and the females. The major sex steroid hormones include ESTRADIOL; PROGESTERONE; and TESTOSTERONE.Prostitution: The practice of indulging in sexual relations for money.Homosexuality, Male: Sexual attraction or relationship between males.Sex Education: Education which increases the knowledge of the functional, structural, and behavioral aspects of human reproduction.Sexual Behavior: Sexual activities of humans.