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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2005 Nov;71(11):7442-52.

Rhodopseudomonas palustris regulons detected by cross-species analysis of alphaproteobacterial genomes.

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Wadsworth Center, New York State Department of Health, Center for Medical Sciences, 150 New Scotland Ave., Albany, NY 12208, USA.


Rhodopseudomonas palustris, an alpha-proteobacterium, carries out three of the chemical reactions that support life on this planet: the conversion of sunlight to chemical-potential energy; the absorption of carbon dioxide, which it converts to cellular material; and the fixation of atmospheric nitrogen into ammonia. Insight into the transcription-regulatory network that coordinates these processes is fundamental to understanding the biology of this versatile bacterium. With this goal in mind, we predicted regulatory signals genomewide, using a two-step phylogenetic-footprinting and clustering process that we had developed previously. In the first step, 4,963 putative transcription factor binding sites, upstream of 2,044 genes and operons, were identified using cross-species Gibbs sampling. Bayesian motif clustering was then employed to group the cross-species motifs into regulons. We have identified 101 putative regulons in R. palustris, including 8 that are of particular interest: a photosynthetic regulon, a flagellar regulon, an organic hydroperoxide resistance regulon, the LexA regulon, and four regulons related to nitrogen metabolism (FixK2, NnrR, NtrC, and sigma54). In some cases, clustering allowed us to assign functions to proteins that previously had been annotated with only putative functions; we have identified RPA0828 as the organic hydroperoxide resistance regulator and RPA1026 as a cell cycle methylase. In addition to predicting regulons, we identified a novel inverted repeat that likely forms a highly conserved stem-loop and that occurs downstream of over 100 genes.

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