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Mol Microbiol. 1990 Nov;4(11):1853-62.

The bex locus in encapsulated Haemophilus influenzae: a chromosomal region involved in capsule polysaccharide export.

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Institute of Molecular Medicine, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK.


The nucleotide sequence of a 5.1 kb region in the Haemophilus influenzae type b capsulation locus has been determined and found to contain four open reading frames: bexD, bexC, bexB, and bexA. Comparison of the deduced products of bexC, bexB, and bexA to known proteins, and TnphoA mutagenesis, suggests that they form components of an ATP-driven polysaccharide export apparatus. Furthermore, close sequence similarity between BexA and BexB and products of the kpsT and kpsM genes at the Escherichia coli K5 capsulation locus (Smith et al., 1990--accompanying paper) suggests that capsulation genes in these organisms may have a common ancestry.

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