Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
The ferric citrate transport system of Escherichia coli is the first example of a transcription initiation mechanism that starts at the cell surface. The inducer, ferric citrate, binds to an outer membrane transport protein, and without further transport elicits a signal that is transmitted across the outer membrane, the periplasm, and the cytoplasmic membrane into the cytoplasm. Signal transfer across the three subcellular compartments is mediated by the outer membrane transport protein that interacts in the periplasm with a cytoplasmic transmembrane protein. The latter is required for activation of a sigma factor which belongs to the extracytoplasmic function sigma factor family. A similar kind of transcription regulation has been demonstrated in Pseudomonas putida, P. aeruginosa, Serratia marcescens, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Aerobacter aerogenes, Bordetella pertussis, B. bronchseptica, B. avium, and Ralstonia solanacearum. The genomes of P. putida, P. aeruginosa, Nitrosomonas europaea, Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron and Caulobacter crescentus predict the existence of many more such transcriptional regulatory devices.
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