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J Mol Biol. 1995 Apr 7;247(4):568-77.

Kid, a small protein of the parD stability system of plasmid R1, is an inhibitor of DNA replication acting at the initiation of DNA synthesis.

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Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas, C.S.I.C. Velázquez, Madrid, Spain.


The Kid and Kis proteins are the killer component and the antagonist belonging to parD, a killer stability system of plasmid R1. The Kid and Kis proteins have been purified, the second one as a C-LYT-Kis fusion that conserves the antagonistic activity of the Kis protein, but not its auto-regulatory potential. Kid inhibits in vitro replication of CoEl to a basal level without altering the superhelicity of the template but it does not substantially affect in vitro replication of P4, a DnaA, DnaB, DnaC and DnaG-independent replicon. Kid inhibits lytic induction of a lambda, prophage, but this inhibition can be neutralized by excess DnaB. In addition, a multicopy dnaB recombinant, but not a multicopy dnaG recombinant, prevents the toxicity associated with this protein. Inhibition of ColE1 replication by Kid in vitro is prevented by the C-LYT-Kis protein. Functional analysis indicates that the antagonistic activity of Kis is independent of its activity as a co-regulator of the parD promoter. It is also shown that C-LYT-Kis and Kid interact, forming a tight complex. These results strongly suggest that the toxicity of the kid protein is due to inhibition of DnaB-dependent DNA replication, and that direct protein-protein interactions are involved in the neutralization of the activity of the killer protein by the antagonist.

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