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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2000 Oct 1;191(1):11-6.

The colanic acid gene cluster of Salmonella enterica has a complex history.

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Department of Microbiology (G08), University of Sydney, 2006, Sydney, N.S.W., Australia.


The colanic acid gene cluster of Salmonella enterica LT2 was sequenced and compared with that of Escherichia coli K-12. The two clusters are similar with divergence slightly higher than average for genes of the two species. The cluster was divided into four blocks by GC content and seems likely to have transferred from a higher GC content species to the ancestor of E. coli and S. enterica. All 19 genes of K-12 and 13 genes of LT2 appear to have undergone random genetic drift with amelioration of the GC content. However, in the case of S. enterica, we believe that the six genes of the GDP-fucose pathway group were replaced relatively recently by genes closely related to those of the original donor species. Two repetitive elements were observed: a bacterial interspersed mosaic element in the intergenic region between wzx and wcaK in K-12 only and a RSA (repetitive sequence element) sequence between wcaJ and wzx in LT2 only.

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