A selectable marker is a gene introduced into a cell, especially a bacterium or to cells in culture, that confers a trait suitable for artificial selection. They are a type of reporter gene used in laboratory microbiology, molecular biology, and genetic engineering to indicate the success of a transfection or other procedure meant to introduce foreign DNA into a cell. Selectable markers are often antibiotic resistance genes; bacteria that have been subjected to a procedure to introduce foreign DNA are grown on a medium containing an antibiotic, and those bacterial colonies that can grow have successfully taken up and expressed the introduced genetic material.
An alternative to a selectable marker is a screenable marker, which allows the researcher to distinguish between wanted and unwanted cells. blue/white colonies.
Examples of selectable markers include:
- Beta-lactamase which confers ampicillin resistance to bacterial hosts.
- Neo gene from Tn5, which confers resistance to kanamycin in bacteria and geneticin in eukaryotic cells
- Mutant FabI gene (mFabI) from E. coli genome, which confers triclosan resistance to the host. 
- Callmigration.org: Gene targeting
- Jang, Chuan-Wei; Magnuson, Terry (20 February 2013). "A Novel Selection Marker for Efficient DNA Cloning and Recombineering in E. coli". PLoS ONE 8 (2): e57075. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0057075. PMID 23437314.
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