Characterization of the Lactobacillus Helveticus grosESL Operon

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Journal of Dairy Science





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This study utilized inverse polymerase chain reactions to characterize a 2.7-kb region of the Lactobacillus helveticus LH212 chromosome that included two complete and one truncated open reading frames (ORFs). Protein homology searches showed that the first two ORFs encoded homologs to the universally conserved heat shock proteins GroES and GroEL. Amino acids encoded by the 5' end of the truncated ORF that was downstream of groEL showed good homology to the amino terminal end of the Streptococcus pneumoniae DNA mismatch repair enzyme HexA. Nucleotide sequence analysis identified a putative transcriptional promoter upstream of groES that was comprised of -35 and -10 hexamers flanked upstream and downstream by copies of the conserved Gram-positive heat shock gene regulatory sequence, CIRCE. A large inverted repeat that may function as a rho-independent transcriptional terminator was located between groEL and the third ORF. Northern hybridization of an LH212 groEL gene fragment to RNA isolated from cells that had been heat shocked at 52 degrees C for 0, 5, 10 or 15 min detected a 2.2-kb transcript in each of the cell preparations. Densitometry showed the concentration of this mRNA species was approximately 4-fold higher after heat shock for 5 or 10 min and 3-fold higher after 15 min of heat shock.

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