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

Growth phase dependence of the activation of a bacterial gene for carotenoid synthesis by blue light.

Myxococcus xanthus responds to blue light by producing carotenoid pigments. A mutation at a gene named carC is known to block the metabolism of phytoene, a carotenoid precursor, and this gene has now been cloned and sequenced. We show here that gene carC, which is homologous to phytoene dehydrogenase genes from other organisms, is tightly regulated by light through a mechanism that operates only when the cells have reached the stationary phase or are starved of a carbon source. A genetic element that mediates the effect of the growth phase has been identified. Gene carC is integrated with another unlinked carotenogenic gene in a single 'light regulon' controlled by common trans-acting genetic elements. A potential -35 site for the binding of sigma factors has been found upstream of the carC transcriptional start. However, the -10 region shows no similarity with analogous sites at promoters of other Gram-negative bacteria.[1]


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