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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2006 Apr;257(1):99-105.

FIS activates glnAp2 in Escherichia coli: role of a DNA bend centered at -55, upstream of the transcription start site.

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  • 1National Laboratory of Protein Engineering and Plant Genetic Engineering, College of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing, China.


A binding site for the Escherichia coli nucleoid binding protein FIS (factor for inversion stimulation) was identified upstream of a sigma54-dependent promoter, glnAp2. The binding and bending center of FIS is positioned at -55 with respect to the transcription start site (+1). Binding of FIS at this site activates the transcription of glnAp2 both in vivo and in vitro. Furthermore, we substituted the FIS-mediated DNA bending with other protein (cAMP receptor protein or integration host factor)-mediated DNA bending, without changing the position of the bending center. In vitro transcription assays indicated that all DNA bends centered at -55 activate transcriptional initiation of glnAp2, especially when linear templates were used.

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