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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. Jun 1986; 83(12): 4423–4427.
PMCID: PMC323745

Host participation in plasmid maintenance: dependence upon dnaA of replicons derived from P1 and F.


Nonparticipation of the bacterial dnaA gene in plasmid replication has been assumed to be the general rule. In conditional dnaA mutants of Escherichia coli, only plasmid pSC101 has been shown to have a dnaA requirement. Experiments with dnaA null mutants of E. coli, presented here, show that dnaA plays a critical and direct role in the replication of miniplasmids derived from P1 and F as it does in the initiation of bacterial replication. Evidence is also presented for the existence of a dnaA-independent secondary replicon of P1 that is able to drive bacterial chromosome replication but is inadequate to support the maintenance of P1 as a plasmid in E. coli.

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