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Mol Gen Genet. 1994 Jan;242(1):116-20.

Molecular cloning, sequence and regulation of expression of the recA gene of the phototrophic bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides.

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Department of Genetics and Microbiology, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Bellaterra, Spain.


The recA gene of Rhodobacter sphaeroides 2.4.1 has been isolated by complementation of a UV-sensitive RecA- mutant of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Its complete nucleotide sequence consists of 1032 bp, encoding a polypeptide of 343 amino acids. The deduced amino acid sequence displayed highest identity to the RecA proteins from Rhizobium meliloti, Rhizobium phaseoli, and Agrobacterium tumefaciens. An Escherichia coli-like SOS consensus region, which functions as a binding site for the LexA repressor molecule was not present in the 215 bp upstream region of the R. sphaeroides recA gene. Nevertheless, by using a recA-lacZ fusion, we have shown that expression of the recA gene of R. sphaeroides is inducible by DNA damage. A recA-defective strain of R. sphaeroides was obtained by replacement of the active recA gene by a gene copy inactivated in vitro. The resulting recA mutant exhibited increased sensitivity to UV irradiation, and was impaired in its ability to perform homologous recombination as well as to trigger DNA damage-mediated expression. This is the first recA gene from a Gram-negative bacterium that lacks an E. coli-like SOS box but whose expression has been shown to be DNA damage-inducible and auto-regulated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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