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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Expression of the Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120 xisA gene from a heterologous promoter results in excision of the nifD element.

An 11-kilobase-pair element interrupts the nifD gene in vegetative cells of Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120. The nifD element normally excises only from the chromosomes of cells that differentiate into nitrogen-fixing heterocysts. The xisA gene contained within the element is required for the excision. Shuttle vectors containing the Escherichia coli tac consensus promoter fused to various 5' deletions of the xisA gene were constructed and conjugated into Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120 cells. Some of the expression plasmids resulted in excision of the nifD element in a high proportion of vegetative cells. Excision of the element required deletion of an xisA 5' regulatory region which presumably blocks expression in Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120 vegetative cells but not in E. coli. Strains lacking the nifD element grew normally in medium containing a source of combined nitrogen and showed normal growth and heterocyst development in medium lacking combined nitrogen. The xisA gene was shown to be the only Anabaena gene required for the proper rearrangement in E. coli of a plasmid containing the borders of the nifD element.[1]


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