Base changes at position 792 of Escherichia coli 16S rRNA affect assembly of 70S ribosomes.
To investigate the function of base 792 of 16S rRNA in 30S ribosomes of Escherichia coli, the wild-type (adenine) residue was changed to guanine, cytosine, or uracil by oligonucleotide-directed mutagenesis. Each base change conferred a unique phenotype on the cells. Cells containing plasmid pKK3535 with G792 or T792 showed no difference in generation time in LB broth containing ampicillin, whereas cells with C792 exhibited a 20% increase in generation time in this medium. To study the effect on cell growth of a homogeneous population of mutant ribosomes, the mutations were cloned into the 16S rRNA gene on pKK3535 carrying a spectinomycin-resistance marker (thymine at position 1192), and the cells were grown with spectinomycin. Cells containing G792 or C792 showed 16% and 56% increases in generation time, respectively, and a concomitant decrease in 35S assimilation into proteins. Cells with T792 did not grow in spectinomycin-containing medium. Maxicell analyses indicated decreasing ability to form 70S ribosomes from 30S subunits containing guanine, cytosine, or uracil at position 792 in 16S rRNA. It appeared that C792-containing 30S ribosomes had lost the ability to bind initiation factor 3.
Santer, M; Bennett-Guerrero, E; Byahatti, S; Czarnecki, S; O'Connell, D; Meyer, M; Khoury, J; Cheng, X; Schwartz, I; McLaughlin, J
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