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J Biol Chem. 1987 Apr 5;262(10):4770-7.

Cloning, sequencing, in vivo promoter mapping, and expression in Escherichia coli of the gene for the HhaI methyltransferase.


A 1476-base pair DNA fragment from Haemophilus haemolyticus containing the HhaI methyltransferase gene was isolated from a cell library and cloned into pBR322. The nucleotide sequence of this fragment was determined. The structural gene is 981 nucleotides in length coding for a protein of 327 amino acids (Mr 37,000). The translational start signal (ATG) is preceded by the putative ribosome-binding site (TAAG). Recombinant plasmids containing the 1476-basepair fragment are completely methylated when isolated from Escherichia coli, as judged by their insusceptibility to the HhaI restriction endonuclease. However, the presence of an active HhaI methylase gene in certain E. coli strains results in a very poor yield of transformants and/or in vivo-originated deletions due to the Rg1 functions of these hosts. The in vivo transcription initiation sites have been identified by S1 protection and primer-extension experiments using specific probes with total RNA prepared from E. coli cells (HB101 or RR1) which tolerate the expression of MHhaI.

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