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The organisms of the genus Lysobacter have been recognized as prolific producers of bioactive secondary metabolites, making them potentially valuable as biocontrol agents and as sources of compounds for drug leads. This study was aimed at understanding the regulatory mechanisms that underlie the production of secondary metabolites in our study organism, Lysobacter enzymogenes. Since secondary metabolism is energetically costly, we sought not only to elucidate the biosynthetic chemistry by which the bioactive molecules were constructed, but also the regulation of the biosynthetic machinery. The molecular mechanisms by which L. enzymogenes responds to environmental conditions and transduces signals leading to secondary metabolism has hitherto been almost entirely unexplored. In this thesis, we show how the tools of molecular biology and analytical chemistry have been used to investigate the regulatory mechanisms of this valuable organism.
Advisor: Liangcheng Du