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Our goal is to construct an improved Escherichia coli to serve both as a better model organism and as a more useful technological tool for genome science. We developed techniques for precise genomic surgery and applied them to deleting the largest K-islands of E. coli, identified by comparative genomics as recent horizontal acquisitions to the genome. They(More)
The genome-wide location of RNA polymerase binding sites was determined in Escherichia coli using chromatin immunoprecipitation and microarrays (chIP-chip). Cross-linked chromatin was isolated in triplicate from rifampin-treated cells, and DNA bound to RNA polymerase was precipitated with an antibody specific for the beta' subunit. The DNA was amplified and(More)
Genome-scale models of Escherichia coli K-12 MG1655 metabolism have been able to predict growth phenotypes in most, but not all, defined growth environments. Here we introduce the use of an optimization-based algorithm that predicts the missing reactions that are required to reconcile computation and experiment when they disagree. The computer-generated(More)
We applied whole-genome resequencing of Escherichia coli to monitor the acquisition and fixation of mutations that conveyed a selective growth advantage during adaptation to a glycerol-based growth medium. We identified 13 different de novo mutations in five different E. coli strains and monitored their fixation over a 44-d period of adaptation. We obtained(More)
In Clostridium thermocellum, a thermophilic anaerobic bacterium able to rapidly ferment cellulose to ethanol, pyruvate kinase (EC 2.7.1.40) is absent based on both the genome sequence and enzymatic assays. Instead, a new pathway converting phosphoenolpyruvate to pyruvate via a three-step pathway involving phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, NADH-linked(More)
Expression of an amber suppressor tRNA should result in read-through of the 326 open reading frames (ORFs) that terminate with amber stop codons in the Escherichia coli genome, including six pseudogenes. Abnormal extension of an ORF might alter the activities of the protein and have effects on cellular physiology, while suppression of a pseudogene could(More)
The development and validation of new methods to help direct rational strain design for metabolite overproduction remains an important problem in metabolic engineering. Here we show that computationally predicted E. coli strain designs, calculated from a genome-scale metabolic model, can lead to successful production strains and that adaptive evolution of(More)
We have developed a method called "gene gorging" to make precise mutations in the Escherichia coli genome at frequencies high enough (1-15%) to allow direct identification of mutants by PCR or other screen rather than by selection. Gene gorging begins by establishing a donor plasmid carrying the desired mutation in the target cell. This plasmid is(More)
A principal aim of systems biology is to develop in silico models of whole cells or cellular processes that explain and predict observable cellular phenotypes. Here, we use a model of a genome-scale reconstruction of the integrated metabolic and transcriptional regulatory networks for Escherichia coli, composed of 1,010 gene products, to assess the(More)
The essential genes of microorganisms encode biological functions important for survival and thus tend to be of high scientific interest. Drugs that interfere with essential functions are likely to be interesting candidates for antimicrobials. However, these genes are hard to study genetically because knockout mutations in them are by definition inviable.(More)