Overlapping transcription and termination of the convergent ilvA and ilvY genes of Escherichia coli

J. H. Sameshima, R. C. Wek, G. W. Hatfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

The ilvY gene of Escherichia coli is transcribed in a direction opposite to the ilvGMEDA operon, and the translational stop codons of the ilvA and ilvY genes are only 52 base pairs (bp) apart. We have employed galK transcriptional analyses, in vitro transcription assays, and S1 nuclease mapping to show that the converging transcripts of the ilvGMEDA operon and the ilvY gene overlap. The ilvGMEDA transcript terminates at two sites in the distal amino acid coding region of the ilvY gene: a ρ-independent termination site 116 bp downstream of the ilvA translational stop codon, ilvA t, and a 62-bp-long ρ-dependent termination site, ilvA t', beginning 70 bp beyond the ilvA t site. This tt' termination pattern at the distal end of the ilvGMEDA operon is similar to that of the trp operon of E. coli and the leu operon of Salmonella typhimurium. Termination of ilvY transcription occurs over a broad stretch of DNA several hundred base pairs downstream of the ilvY translational stop codon in the middle of the amino acid coding region of the ilvA gene. These experiments demonstrate that the converging transcripts from the ilvA and ilvY genes terminate in the coding region of the opposing gene.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1224-1231
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume264
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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