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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1990 Nov;87(21):8587-91.

Isolation and characterization of a second RNase H (RNase HII) of Escherichia coli K-12 encoded by the rnhB gene.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Mitsubishi Kasei Institute of Life Sciences, Tokyo, Japan.


An additional RNase H (EC, RNase HII, has been isolated from Escherichia coli K-12. By screening a library of E. coli DNA for clones that suppressed RNase H deficiency of an E. coli rnh mutant, a clone was obtained that produced a protein with RNase H activity. The overexpressed RNase HIII protein in E. coli was purified to near homogeneity and exhibited a strong preference for the ribonucleotide moiety of RNA-DNA hybrid as substrate. The terminal 11 amino acids were determined and were identical to those predicted from the nucleotide sequence. The rnhB gene, which encodes RNase HII, was distinct from rnhA by its map position (4.5 min on E. coli genetic map, between lpxB and dnaE) and by the lack of significant amino acid sequence similarity. The presence of a second RNase H in E. coli indicates that multiple RNase H genes per genome is a general feature of a general feature of a wide variety of organisms.

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