Structure of the Bacillus sphaericus R modification methylase gene

György Pósfai, Antal Kiss, Sára Erdei, János Pósfai, Pál Venetianer

Research output: Article

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A 2·5 × 103 base-pair segment of Bacillus sphaericus R DNA cloned in Escherichia coli has previously been shown to carry the functional BspRI modification methylase gene. The approximate location of the gene on this DNA segment and its direction of transcription were established by subcloning experiments. The nucleotide sequence of the relevant region was determined by the Maxam-Gilbert procedure. An open reading frame that can code for a 424 amino acid protein was found. The calculated molecular weight (48,264) of this protein is in fair agreement with previous estimates (50,000 to 52,000). The synthesis of this protein was demonstrated in E. coli minicells. The initiation point of transcription by E. coli RNA polymerase was localized by in vitro transcription experiments. The open reading frame starts 29 base-pairs downstream from the transcription initiation site and it is preceded by a sequence showing extensive Shine-Dalgarno complementarity. Subcloning experiments and translation in minicells suggest that after removal of this translational initiation site, a secondary start site 29 amino acids downstream can also start translation in E. coli, and this shorter protein retains the methylase activity. The overall base composition of the gene and the codon usage indicate a strong preference for A · T base-pairs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)597-610
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of molecular biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - nov. 5 1983


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology

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