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J Bacteriol. Jun 1993; 175(11): 3335–3342.
PMCID: PMC204730

A new putative sigma factor of Myxococcus xanthus.


A third putative sigma factor gene, sigC, has been isolated from Myxococcus xanthus by using the sigA gene (formerly rpoD of M. xanthus) as a probe. The nucleotide sequence of sigC has been determined, and an open reading frame of 295 residues (M(r) = 33,430) has been identified. The deduced amino acid sequence of sigC exhibits the features which are characteristic of other bacterial sigma factors. The characterization of a sigC-lacZ strain has demonstrated that sigC expression is induced immediately after cells enter into the developmental cycle and is dramatically reduced at the onset of sporulation. A deletion mutant of sigC grows normally in vegetative culture and is able to develop normally. However, in contrast to the wild-type cells, the sigC deletion mutant cells became capable of forming fruiting bodies and myxospores on semirich agar plates. This suggests that sigC may play a role in expression of genes involved in negatively regulating the initiation of fruiting body formation.

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