Hygromycin B

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Hygromycin B
CAS Number
PubChem CID
E number{{#property:P628}}
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Chemical and physical data
Molar mass527.53 g/mol (563.5 with HCl)

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Hygromycin B, is an antibiotic produced by the bacterium Streptomyces hygroscopicus. It is an aminoglycoside that kills bacteria, fungi and higher eukaryotic cells by inhibiting protein synthesis[1].


Hygromycin B was originally developed in the 1950's for use with animals and is still added into swine and chicken feed as an anthelmintic or anti-worming agent (product name: Hygromix). Hygromycin B is produced by Streptomyces hygroscopicus, a bacteria isolated in 1953 from a soil sample. Resistance genes were discovered in the early 1980's.[2][3]

Use in research

In the laboratory it is used for the selection and maintenance of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells that contain the hygromycin resistance gene. The resistance gene is a kinase that inactivates hygromycin B through phosphorylation.[4] Since the discovery of hygromycin-resistance genes, hygromycin B has become a standard selection antibiotic in gene transfer experiments in many prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.

External links

Information from hygromycin.net (InvivoGen)

  • mechanism of action: [1]
  • resistance genes: [2]
  • chemistry, stability: [3]


  1. McGuire, Pettinger (1953), "Hygromycin I. Preliminary studies on the production and biological activity of a new antibiotic.", Antibiot. Chemother., 3: 1268–1278
  2. Davies, Gritz (1983), "Plasmid-encoded hygromycin B resistance: the sequence of hygromycin B phosphotransferase gene and its expression in Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae.", Gene, 25: 179–88
  3. Burgett, Kaster (1983), "Analysis of a bacterial hygromycin B resistance gene by transcriptional and translational fusions and by DNA sequencing.", Nucleic Acids Res., 11: 6895–911
  4. Rao RN, Allen NE, Hobbs JN, Alborn WE, Kirst HA, Paschal JW (1983). "Genetic and enzymatic basis of hygromycin B resistance in Escherichia coli". Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. 24 (5): 689–95. PMID 6318654.