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  1. Don G Ennis

Published Online: 19 APR 2001

DOI: 10.1038/npg.els.0000559



How to Cite

Ennis, D. G. 2001. Mutagenesis. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. University of Louisiana, Lafayette, Louisiana, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 APR 2001


Mutations have a potential for either positive or negative effects on an organism. To combat the deleterious effects of excessive mutagenesis, elaborate systems of enzymes have evolved to correct errors that arise spontaneously in cells or induced following DNA damage. However, DNA must necessarily change as organisms evolve, thus, some low level of mutagenesis is tolerated perhaps even promoted to assure normal and healthy levels of genetic variation of populations.


  • DNA replication;
  • DNA repair;
  • evolution;
  • genotoxicity;
  • carcinogenesis