Three genes, sigF, sigG and sigH, encoding group 3 sigma factors have been cloned and characterized in the marine cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. strain PCC 7002. The sigF gene product was similar to sigma factors involved in general stress response and sporulation in other organisms, and the sigG and sigH gene products were similar to extracytoplasmic function (ECF) sigma factors. The sigG and sigH genes were associated with the putative regulatory genes and the sizes of transcripts for sigG and sigH genes were large enough to be cotranscribed with the associated downstream genes. The sigG downstream gene was designated sapG (sigG-associated protein), and yeast two-hybrid analysis demonstrated that SigG and SapG interact when produced in yeast cells. Null mutants of these three group 3 sigma factor genes were created by interposon mutagenesis. The growth of the sigF mutant strain was much slower than the wild-type strain at 15°C, although the growth rates at 22°C and 38°C were identical to those of the wild-type strain. The sigG mutant could not grow continuously at 22°C, and no growth occurred at 15°C. Since SigG and SapG interact in yeast cells and the sigG and sapG mutants showed a similar growth phenotype, SapG is likely to be a regulatory protein for SigG involved in the same pathway in transcriptional regulation in this cyanobacterium.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology