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Tuberculosis (Edinb). 2009 Jan;89(1):12-6. doi: 10.1016/j.tube.2008.07.007. Epub 2008 Sep 17.

Nitrile-inducible gene expression in mycobacteria.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA 01655, USA.

Abstract

The ability to ectopically control gene expression is a fundamental tool for the study of bacterial physiology and pathogenesis. While many efficient inducible expression systems are available for Gram-negative bacteria, few are useful in phylogenetically distant organisms, such as mycobacteria. We have adapted a highly-inducible regulon of Rhodococcus rhodochrous to artificially regulate gene expression in both rapidly-growing environmental mycobacteria and slow-growing pathogens, such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. We demonstrate that this artificial regulatory circuit behaves as a bistable switch, which can be manipulated regardless of growth phase in vitro, and during intracellular growth in macrophages. High-level overexpression is also possible, facilitating biochemical and structural studies of mycobacterial proteins produced in their native host.

PMID:
18801704
PMCID:
PMC2845969
DOI:
10.1016/j.tube.2008.07.007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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