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Bacterial transcription is regulated by the alarmone ppGpp, which binds near the catalytic site of RNA polymerase (RNAP) and modulates its activity. We show that the DksA protein is a crucial component of ppGpp-dependent regulation. The 2.0 A resolution structure of Escherichia coli DksA reveals a globular domain and a coiled coil with two highly conserved(More)
Rifamycins, the clinically important antibiotics, target bacterial RNA polymerase (RNAP). A proposed mechanism in which rifamycins sterically block the extension of nascent RNA beyond three nucleotides does not alone explain why certain RNAP mutations confer resistance to some but not other rifamycins. Here we show that unlike rifampicin and rifapentin, and(More)
Nucleic acid polymerases have evolved elaborate mechanisms that prevent incorporation of the non-cognate substrates, which are distinguished by both the base and the sugar moieties. While the mechanisms of substrate selection have been studied in single-subunit DNA and RNA polymerases (DNAPs and RNAPs, respectively), the determinants of substrate binding in(More)
Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells selectively use nitrogen sources in their environment. Nitrogen catabolite repression (NCR) is the basis of this selectivity. Until recently NCR was thought to be accomplished exclusively through the negative regulation of Gln3p function by Ure2p. The demonstration that NCR-sensitive expression of multiple nitrogen-catabolic(More)
Nitrogen catabolic gene expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been reported to be regulated by three GATA family proteins, the positive regulators Gln3p and Gat1p/Nil1p and the negative regulator Dal80p/Uga43p. We show here that a fourth member of the yeast GATA family, the Dal80p homolog Deh1p, also negatively regulates expression of some, but not(More)
UvrD helicase is required for nucleotide excision repair, although its role in this process is not well defined. Here we show that Escherichia coli UvrD binds RNA polymerase during transcription elongation and, using its helicase/translocase activity, forces RNA polymerase to slide backward along DNA. By inducing backtracking, UvrD exposes DNA lesions(More)
When readily used nitrogen sources are available, the expression of genes encoding proteins needed to transport and metabolize poorly used nitrogen sources is repressed to low levels; this physiological response has been designated nitrogen catabolite repression (NCR). The cis-acting upstream activation sequence (UAS) element UAS(NTR) mediates(More)
The transcriptional enhancer protein RfaH positively regulates production of virulence factors in Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium via a cis element, ops. Genes coding for RfaH orthologs were identified in conceptually translated genomes of bacterial pathogens, including Vibrio and Yersinia spp. We cloned the rfaH genes from(More)
DNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RNAP) accomplishes multiple tasks during transcription by assuming different structural forms. Reportedly, the "tight" form performs nucleotide addition to nascent RNA, while the "ratcheted" form is adopted for transcription inhibition. In this study, we performed Cys-pair crosslinking (CPX) analyses of various transcription(More)