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J Gen Microbiol. 1993 Apr;139(4):725-33.

Cloning and characterization of a nitrite reductase gene from Alcaligenes faecalis and its expression in Escherichia coli.

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Department of Agricultural Chemistry, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Tokyo, Japan.


The gene (nir) encoding the copper-containing nitrite reductase (NIR) of a denitrifying bacterium, Alcaligenes faecalis S-6, was cloned by a synthetic oligonucleotide-probing method. The nucleotide sequence of the cloned DNA fragment revealed the primary structure of the NIR precursor containing the N-terminal signal sequence for secretion. A nucleotide sequence, possibly recognized by a transcriptional regulator resembling FNR was found upstream of the structural gene. When the cloned gene was expressed in Escherichia coli under the control of the lac promoter at 37 degrees C, NIR was produced as large inclusion bodies and little activity was detected. When cultivation was at 20 degrees C, most of the NIR was detected in the soluble fraction and a significant portion of the protein was translocated into the periplasmic space, accompanied by removal of its signal sequence.

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