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Evidence suggests that resistance to dapsone (DDS) in Mycobacterium leprae is related to the enzyme dihydropteroate synthase (DHPS). Two M. leprae genes (folP-1 and folP-2) encoding DHPS-1 and DHPS-2, respectively, have been identified through the M. leprae genome project. We have studied DDS-susceptible and resistant strains of M. leprae to determine whether the DDS-resistant phenotype is associated with a mutation(s) in folP-2 and to establish the number of genomic copies of the gene encoding DHPS-2 (folP-2). RFLP analysis of genomic DNA from DDS-susceptible and resistant strains of M. leprae exhibited a unique 4.2 kb restriction fragment consistent with a single genomic copy of folP-2 in both phenotypes. DNA encoding folP-2 was amplified by PCR and sequenced from two susceptible and two resistant strains of M. leprae. The folP-2 sequences from these strains were identical indicating that resistance to DDS was not associated with mutation(s) in the gene encoding DHPS-2.


T P Gillis, D L Williams. Dapsone resistance does not appear to be associated with a mutation in the dihydropteroate synthase-2 gene of Mycobacterium leprae. Indian journal of leprosy. 1999 Jan-Mar;71(1):11-8

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PMID: 10439322

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