Faculty Research 1980 - 1989

DNA methylation differentially enhances the expression of one of the two E. coli dnaA promoters in vivo and in vitro.

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Base-Sequence, DNA-Restriction-Enzymes, Endonucleases, Escherichia-coli, Genes, Genes-Bacterial, Genes-Regulator, Methylation, Promoter-Regions-Genetic, Single-Strand-Specific-DNA-and-RNA-Endonucleases, Transcription-Genetic

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Mol Gen Genet 1986 Feb; 202(2):246-50.


The promoter/regulatory region of the dnaA gene, whose gene product is required for the initiation of DNA replication in Escherichia coli K-12, contains an unusually large number of Dam methylation sites. In this paper we report that the expression of the dnaA gene is decreased in Dam- strains of E. coli. The decrease in the expression of dnaA was measured in vivo using a dnaA-lacZ gene fusion. In vivo S1 nuclease mapping demonstrated that the decrease was due to a differential decrease in expression from the more proximal of the two dnaA promoters, dnaA2P. Comparison of the strengths of the two dnaA promoters in an in vitro transcription system using methylated and unmethylated DNA templates suggests that the effect of methylation on dnaA2P is probably at the level of RNA polymerase/DNA interaction. We suggest that this effect of methylation may be important in controlling the expression of dnaA during the E. coli cell cycle.

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