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J Bacteriol. Mar 1985; 161(3): 1146–1155.
PMCID: PMC215019

Differential expression of protein S genes during Myxococcus xanthus development.


Protein S, the most abundant protein synthesized during development of the fruiting bacterium Myxococcus xanthus, is coded by two highly homologous genes called protein S gene 1 (ops) and protein S gene 2 (tps). The expression of these genes was studied with fusions of the protein S genes to the lacZ gene of Escherichia coli. The gene fusions were constructed so that expression of beta-galactosidase activity was dependent on protein S gene regulatory sequences. Both the gene 1-lacZ fusion and the gene 2-lacZ fusion were expressed exclusively during fruiting body formation (development) in M. xanthus. However, distinct patterns of induction of fusion protein activity were observed for the two genes. Gene 2 fusion activity was detected early during development on an agar surface and could also be observed during nutritional downshift in dispersed liquid culture. Gene 1 fusion activity was not detected until much later in development and was not observed after downshift in liquid culture. The time of induction of gene 1 fusion activity was correlated with the onset of sporulation, and most of the activity was spore associated. This gene fusion was expressed during glycerol-induced sporulation when gene 2 fusion activity could not be detected. The protein S genes appear to be members of distinct regulatory classes of developmental genes in M. xanthus.

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Selected References

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