What is the difference between transformation and conjunction of bacteria?
Transformation and conjunction are two ways where one can see the exchange of genetic material in bacteria.
Transformation in bacteria is a process of picking up some external DNA and incorporating it into the genome. This occurs from external media to internal of the cell using cell membranes.
The essential factor for transformation to occur is that the bacteria must face some competition for its survival, like limited resources for growth or starvation etc.
Transformation was first shown by Frederick Griffith in 1928. Using this experiment, he gave a famous Transforming Principle.
Conjunction of Bacteria means joining of bacteria. Here, the exchange of genetic material is done by physical contact of the two bacteria. One of the bacteria is a donor while the other one is the recipeint of the DNA. The donor has a special Fertility Factor or F- factor. It is a method of horizontal gene transfer. It is often considered as sexual reproduction in bacteria.
A recipient in this case often receives useful genetic information like antibiotic resistance.