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Biochimie. 2001 Feb;83(2):201-12.

Genome organisation and chromatin structure in Escherichia coli.

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  • 1Center for Biological Sequence Analysis, Department of Biotechnology, Building 208, The Technical University of Denmark, 2800 Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark.


We have analysed the complete sequence of the Escherichia coli K12 isolate MG1655 genome for chromatin-associated protein binding sites, and compared the predicted location of predicted sites with experimental expression data from 'DNA chip' experiments. Of the dozen proteins associated with chromatin in E. coli, only three have been shown to have significant binding preferences: integration host factor (IHF) has the strongest binding site preference, and FIS sites show a weak consensus, and there is no clear consensus site for binding of the H-NS protein. Using hidden Markov models (HMMs), we predict the location of 608 IHF sites, scattered throughout the genome. A subset of the IHF sites associated with repeats tends to be clustered around the origin of replication. We estimate there could be roughly 6000 FIS sites in E. coli, and the sites tend to be localised in two regions flanking the replication termini. We also show that the regions upstream of genes regulated by H-NS are more curved and have a higher AT content than regions upstream of other genes. These regions in general would also be localised near the replication terminus.

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