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J Mol Biol. 1983 May 25;166(3):283-308.

Overlapping and separate controls on the phosphate regulon in Escherichia coli K12.


The physiological and genetic controls operating on phosphate-regulated promoters were studied in greater detail. This was done by defining the control for three phosphate-regulated genes: phoA, psiE, and psiO. Each is highly inducible by phosphate starvation. Individually, these phosphate-starvation-inducible, psi, genes at the same time show common and differing features in their molecular control. The phoA gene, encoding alkaline phosphatase, is specifically induced by phosphate starvation. It is negatively controlled by phoR as well as by the phosphate-specific transport (PST) system in Escherichia coli. phoA induction is positively controlled by the phoB, M, and R products; it is unaffected by the cAMP and CAP system. The psiE and psiO genes were studied by using strains with lacZ fused to their respective promoters. psiE-lacZ is induced by phosphate-, carbon- or nitrogen-limited growth. Genetically, psiE-lacZ induction is partially phoB and phoR-dependent. However, its expression is phoM-independent. This implies that phoB/phoR coupled control differs from phoB/phoM coupled control. Repression of psiE-lacZ is substantially altered in only some PST mutants, such as phoT. In addition, psiE-lacZ is negatively controlled by the cAMP and CAP system. psiO-lacZ is induced by phosphate-, carbon- or nitrogen-limited growth or by anaerobiosis. Its expression is unaffected by any pho mutation that has been previously described. A cell density-dependent induction of psiO-lacZ is observed in lon mutants. Also, psiO-lacZ is negatively controlled by the cAMP-CAP system. In summary, these results demonstrate that co-ordinately regulated promoters can have some common regulatory elements while, at the same time, not sharing other controlling factors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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