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

Temperature-sensitive autolysis-defective mutants of Escherichia coli.

Two independently isolated temperature-sensitive autolysis-defective mutants of Escherichia coli LD5 (thi lysA dapD) were characterized. The mutants were isolated by screening the survivors of a three-step enrichment process involving sequential treatments with bactericidal concentrations of D-cycloserine, benzyl-penicillin, and D-cycloserine at 42 degrees C. Cultures of the mutants underwent autolysis during beta-lactam treatment, D-cycloserine treatment, or diaminopimelic acid deprivation at 30 degrees C. The same treatments at 42 degrees C inhibited growth but did not induce lysis of the mutants. The minimum inhibitory concentrations of selected beta-lactam antibiotics and D-cycloserine were identical for the parent and mutant strains at both 30 and 42 degrees C. Both mutants failed to form colonies at 42 degrees C, and both gave rise to spontaneous temperature-resistant revertants. The revertants exhibited the normal lytic response when treated with D-cycloserine and beta-lactams or when deprived of diaminopimelic acid at 42 degrees C. The basis for the autolysis-defective phenotype of these mutants could not be determined. However, a nonspecific in vitro assay for peptidoglycan hydrolase activity in cell-free extracts indicated that both mutants were deficient in a peptidoglycan hydrolase. Both mutations were localized to the 56- to 61-min region of the E. coli chromosome by F' complementation.[1]


  1. Temperature-sensitive autolysis-defective mutants of Escherichia coli. Harkness, R.E., Ishiguro, E.E. J. Bacteriol. (1983) [Pubmed]
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