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Isolation and characterization of Escherichia coli strains containing new gene fusions (soi::lacZ) inducible by superoxide radicals.

By S Mito, Q M Zhang and S Yonei


Gene fusions in Escherichia coli that showed increased beta-galactosidase expression in response to treatment with a superoxide radical (O2-) generator, methyl viologen (MV), were obtained. These fusions were constructed by using a Mud(Ap lac) phage to insert the lactose structural genes randomly into the E. coli chromosome. Ampicillin-resistant colonies were screened for increased expression of beta-galactosidase on X-Gal (5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-beta-D-galactopyranoside) plates containing MV at 1.25 micrograms/ml. Other O2- generators, menadione and plumbagin, also induced beta-galactosidase activity in these fusion strains. The induction by these drugs occurred only under aerobic conditions. Hyperoxygenation also elicited an induction of the fusions. On the other hand, no significant induction was observed with hydrogen peroxide and cumene hydroperoxide. The induction of these fusions by MV was not dependent on the peroxide stress control mediated by the oxyR gene or on the recA-dependent SOS system. These fusions were named soi (superoxide inducible)::lacZ. The induction of beta-galactosidase was significantly reduced by introducing a soxS::Tn10 locus into the fusion strains, indicating that the soi genes are members of the soxRS regulon. Five of the fusions were located in 6 to 26 min of the E. coli genetic map, while three fusions were located in 26 to 36 min, indicating that these fusions are not related to genes already known to be inducible by O2- under the control of soxRS. At least five mutants containing the soi::lacZ fusion were more sensitive to MV and menadione than the wild-type strain, suggesting that the products of these soi genes play an important role in protection against oxidative stress

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1993
DOI identifier: 10.1128/jb.175.9.2645-2651.1993
OAI identifier:
Provided by: PubMed Central
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