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Mol Microbiol. 2003 Jan;47(1):183-94.

Two different modes of transcription repression of the Escherichia coli acetate operon by IclR.

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Department of Molecular Genetics, National Institute of Genetics, Mishima, Shizuoka 411-8504, Japan.


IclR is a repressor for the Escherichia coli aceBAK operon, which encodes isocitrate lyase (aceB), malate synthase (aceA) and isocitrate dehydroge-nase kinase/phosphorylase (aceK) in the glyoxylate bypass. IclR also represses the expression of iclR in an autogenous manner. DNase I footprinting and in vitro transcription assays indicated that IclR binds to an IclR box (-21 to +14), which overlaps the iclR promoter and thus competes with the RNA polymerase for DNA binding, leading to transcription repression. In the case of the aceBAK operon, IclR binds to IclR box II between -52 and -19 of the aceB promoter and interferes with binding of the RNA polymerase to this promoter. A secondary IclR binding site (IclR box I) was identified between -125 and -99 of the aceB promoter. IclR binds to this IclR box I even after formation of the aceB promoter open complex and, moreover, induces disassembly of the open complex, leading to repression of aceB transcription. In parallel, the location of the C-terminal domain of the RNA polymerase alpha subunit (alphaCTD) on DNA is shifted close to the IclR box I, indicating that direct interaction between the alphaCTD and the IclR box I-associated IclR caused the repression.

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