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Transcription termination and processing sites in the bacteriophage lambda pL operon



Transcription termination and processing sites in the bacteriophage lambda pL operon



Journal of Molecular Biology 189(1): 131-141



S1 nuclease mapping was performed on transcripts from the major leftward operon of the bacteriophage lambda in order to locate the 3' ends of stable RNA species produced in vivo. The analysis was carried out on RNA purified from either an induced lambda prophage or bacteria carrying a plasmid containing a large segment of lambda including the intact PL operon through the bet gene. The S1 nuclease mapping was performed on transcripts produced in the presence and the absence of the N antitermination function, and in the presence and the absence of either the RNase III processing enzyme or the Rho factor. The results of this work indicate that the intercistronic region between the N and ral genes of lambda contains three sites at which transcripts end under N-Rho+ conditions (positions on the lambda sequence: 34,826, 34,558 and 34,393). The distal two correspond to the two sites previously described in this region as tL1 (on both sides of the BamHI site). In the region between ral and Ea10, we mapped the 3' ends of three species of RNA. The 3' end of one species was found to be located 90 nucleotides proximal to tL2a, at 34,000 in the lambda sequence. The terminator at this site may be partially N-resistant. In an RNase III deficient host, an additional RNA species is formed. The 3' end of this RNA species is located at tL2a (33,910 on the lambda sequence). In the presence of the antitermination N gene product, the readthrough transcripts are processed to form a 3' end at position 33,980 on the lambda sequence. These results suggest that elongation of transcription of the lambda PL operon is reduced gradually by clusters of termination located between genes and that the expression of the terminated products is further controlled by processing of the mRNA.

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Accession: 041832412

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PMID: 3023619


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