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Mol Microbiol. 1994 Nov;14(3):485-95.

Early stages in development of the Escherichia coli cell-division site.

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Department of Microbiology, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington 06032.


Development of the Escherichia coli cell division site was studied in wild-type cells and in non-septate filaments of ftsZnull and ftsZTs mutant cells. Localized regions of plasmolysis were used as markers for the positions of annular structures that are thought to be related to the periseptal annuli that flank the ingrowing septum during cytokinesis. The results show that these structures are localized at potential division sites in non-septate filaments of FtsZ- cells, contrary to previous reports. The positions of the structures along the long axis of the cells in both wild-type cells and FtsZ- filaments were unaffected by the presence of plasmolysis bays at the cell poles. These results do not agree with a previous suggestion that the apparent association of plasmolysis bays with future division sites was artefactual. They support the view that division sites begin to differentiate before the initiation of septal ingrowth and that plasmolysis bays and the annular attachments that define them, mark the locations of these early events in the division process.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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