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RNA Biol. 2012 Dec;9(12):1491-7. doi: 10.4161/rna.22358. Epub 2012 Oct 11.

Type I toxin-antitoxin systems in Bacillus subtilis.

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CNRS UPR 9073 (affiliated with Univ. Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité), Institut de Biologie Physico-Chimique, Paris, France.


Type I toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are widespread in bacteria and consist of a toxin-encoding mRNA and a partially overlapping antisense RNA that blocks expression of the toxin, either at the level of translation or by mRNA degradation. Four type I toxin families have so far been proposed in B. subtilis based on sequence similarity: TxpA/BsrG, BsrH/BsrE, YonT and YhzE and two (TxpA and BsrG) have been studied in some detail. Here we review what is known about these confirmed and putative toxin-antitoxin families in B. subtilis, their regulatory mechanisms, their potential roles and how they may link to the physiology of the cell.


RNA degradation; antisense RNA; antitoxins; post-segregational killing; prophage; toxins

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