An Escherichia coli gene in search of a function

Gabriella Balikó, Andres Raukas, Imre Boros, Pál Venetianer

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The rrB gene of Escherichia coli is preceded by an open reading frame, which is contranscribed with rrnB both in vivo and in vitro. It has earlier been shown that a 289 amino acid protein corresponding to this gene is actually synthesized in E. coli. In this paper we show that: (1.) The transcription of this gene diminishes the stringent response of the P1 promoter of the linked rrB gene, but this is a cis effect and is not mediated by the protein product of the gene. (2.) The functional integrity of this gene seems to be essential, because efforts to replace it by a plasmidcoded copy mutagenized by Tn5 completely failed. (3.) The protein product of this gene was strongly overproduced by a recombinant plasmid, exploiting the principle of "translational coupling". This overproduction did not change the phenotype of the host cell significantly. The protein was purified to apparent electrophoretic homogenity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326-331
Number of pages6
JournalMGG Molecular & General Genetics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 1988



  • ORFI protein
  • Stringent response
  • Tn5 mutagenesis
  • Translational coupling
  • rrnB gene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

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