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Mol Microbiol. 1989 Dec;3(12):1805-12.

Pseudo-allelic relationship between non-homologous genes concerned with biosynthesis of polyglycerol phosphate and polyribitol phosphate teichoic acids in Bacillus subtilis strains 168 and W23.

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Institut de Génétique et Biologie Microbiennes, Lausanne, Switzerland.


A 60 kbp region of the Bacillus subtilis chromosome encompassing the genes concerned with teichoic acid biosynthesis has been subjected to physical analysis. No homology was detected by Southern hybridization between DNA segments encoding the tag genes of strain 168, concerned with polyglycerol phosphate (poly(groP)) biosynthesis, and the tar genes of strain W23, concerned with polyribitol phosphate (poly-(rboP)) biosynthesis. Analysis of 168/W23 interstrain hybrids that incorporate poly(rboP) instead of poly-(groP) into their cell walls revealed that, in every case, integral substitution of the W23 tar genes for the 168 tag genes had occurred. Interstrain hybrids of the 'W23-like' type have inherited larger segments of W23 DNA than interstrain hybrids of the 'mixed' type. The tag and tar genes are located at equivalent positions on the chromosomes of strains 168 and W23, behaving, in genetic crosses, like an allelic pair. They provide the first example of a pseudo-allelic relationship between non-homologous genes in B. subtilis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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