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Mol Gen Genet. 1981;183(2):318-25.

Protein H encoded by plasmid Clo DF13 involved in lysis of the bacterial host. I. Localisation of the gene and identification and subcellular localisation of the gene H product.


The gene expression of the Clo DF13 "replication region", located between 1.8% and 12% on the plasmid genome, was studied using newly constructed Clo DF13 insertion and deletion mutants. We were able to detect a Clo DF13 specified protein of 6 kilodaltons (kd) by electrophoretic analysis of plasmid proteins, synthesized in Escherichia coli minicells, on 14-25% gradient polyacrylamide gels. The gene encoding this protein was mapped between 1.8% and 12% on the Clo DF13 genome. The nucleotide sequence of this region, as determined by Stuitje et al. (1980), revealed three open reading frames each potentially coding for a protein of 6 kd. Since these three proteins differ in amino acid composition we could distinguish which of these proteins was actually synthesized, by labeling Clo DF13 proteins with specific 14C-labeled amino acids. We found that gene H, located between 9.3% (bp 744) and 11% (bp 893), encodes the observed protein of 6 kd (denominated protein H). With respect to the subcellular localization we observed that protein H, which contains a large hydrophobic region at its C-terminal part, is predominantly present in the bacterial membrane. Although gene H is located close to the region known to be involved in Clo DF13 replication, its gene product, protein H, is not essential for the plasmid DNA replication process. The possibility of the existence of a comparable protein encoded by the related plasmid Col E1 will be discussed.

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