A genetic element inside some bacterial cells, especially the DNA of some bacteriophages, that can replicate independently of the host and also in association with a chromosome with which it becomes integrated. Compare with plasmid.
- Interestingly, overexpression of the functional wild-type HA-Mcm7p from an episome or an integrated allele was toxic for normal cell growth and viability.
- This attribute does not appear to be a feature of other independently isolated episomes, including episomes that cover the same portion of the E. coli chromosome that is included in F'128.
- During latent infection, the viral genome persists as an episome, and viral gene expression is highly restricted.
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