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J Bacteriol. 1991 Dec;173(23):7540-8.

Potential DNA slippage structures acquired during evolutionary divergence of Acinetobacter calcoaceticus chromosomal benABC and Pseudomonas putida TOL pWW0 plasmid xylXYZ, genes encoding benzoate dioxygenases.

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Department of Medical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva, Switzerland.


The xylXYZ DNA region is carried on the TOL pWW0 plasmid in Pseudomonas putida and encodes a benzoate dioxygenase with broad substrate specificity. The DNA sequence of the region is presented and compared with benABC, the chromosomal region encoding the benzoate dioxygenase of Acinetobacter calcoaceticus. Corresponding genes from the two biological sources share common ancestry: comparison of aligned XylX-BenA, XylY-BenB, and XylZ-BenC amino acid sequences revealed respective identities of 58.3, 61.3, and 53%. The aligned genes have diverged to assume G+C contents that differ by 14.0 to 14.9%. Usage of the unusual arginine codons AGA and AGG appears to have been selected in the P. putida xylX gene as it diverged from the ancestor it shared with A. calcoaceticus benA. Homologous A. calcoaceticus and P. putida genes exhibit different patterns of DNA sequence repetition, and analysis of one such pattern suggests that mutations creating different DNA slippage structures made a significant contribution to the evolutionary divergence of xylX.

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