A CI-Independent Form of Replicative Inhibition: Turn Off of Early Replication of Bacteriophage Lambda
by Sidney Hayes, Monique A. Horbay, Connie Hayes
Several earlier studies have described an unusual exclusion phenotype exhibited by cells with plasmids carrying a portion of the replication region of phage lambda. Cells exhibiting this inhibition phenotype (IP) prevent the plating of homo-immune and hybrid hetero-immune lambdoid phages. We have attempted to define aspects of IP, and show that it is directed to repλ phages. IP was observed in cells with plasmids containing a λ DNA fragment including oop, encoding a short OOP micro RNA, and part of the lambda origin of replication, oriλ, defined by iteron sequences ITN1-4 and an adjacent high AT-rich sequence. Transcription of the intact oop sequence from its promoter, pO is required for IP, as are iterons ITN3–4, but not the high AT-rich portion of oriλ. The results suggest that IP silencing is directed to theta mode replication initiation from an infecting repλ genome, or an induced repλ prophage. Phage mutations suppressing IP, i.e., Sip, map within, or adjacent to cro or in O, or both. Our results for plasmid based IP suggest the hypothesis that there is a natural mechanism for silencing early theta-mode replication initiation, i.e. the buildup of λ genomes with oop+ oriλ+ sequence.
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