Correlation Engine 2.0
Clear Search sequence regions

  • cell (1)
  • cellular (1)
  • escherichia coli (4)
  • galactosides (7)
  • iptg (1)
  • lac operons (6)
  • mel (9)
  • operon (11)
  • permeases (1)
  • research (1)
  • sugars (1)
  • transport proteins (2)
  • Sizes of these terms reflect their relevance to your search.

    The lac (lactose) operon (which processes β-galactosides) and the mel (melibiose) operon (which processes α-galactosides) of Escherichia coli have a close historical connection. A number of shared substrates and effectors of the permeases and regulatory proteins have been reported over the years. Until now, β-thiogalactosides like TMG (methyl-β-d-thiogalactopyranoside) and IPTG (isopropyl-β-d-thiogalactopyranoside) have not generally been considered to be inducers of the mel operon. The same is true for β-galactosides such as lactose [β-d-galactopyranosyl-(1→4)-d-glucose], which is a substrate but is not itself an inducer of the lac operon. This report shows that all three sugars can induce the mel operon significantly when they are accumulated in the cell by Lac permease. Strong induction by β-thiogalactosides is observed in the presence of Lac permease, and strong induction by lactose (more than 200-fold) is observed in the absence of β-galactosidase. This finding calls for reevaluation of TMG uptake experiments as assays for Lac permease that were performed with mel+ strains.IMPORTANCE The typical textbook picture of bacterial operons is that of stand-alone units of genetic information that perform, in a regulated manner, well-defined cellular functions. Less attention is given to the extensive interactions that can be found between operons. Well-described examples of such interactions are the effector molecules shared by the lac and mel operons. Here, we show that this set has to be extended to include β-galactosides, which have been, until now, considered not to effect the expression of the mel operon. That they can be inducers of the mel operon as well as the lac operon has not been noted in decades of research because of the Escherichia coli genetic background used in previous studies. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.


    Atul Narang, Stefan Oehler. Effector Overlap between the lac and mel Operons of Escherichia coli: Induction of the mel Operon with β-Galactosides. Journal of bacteriology. 2017 May 01;199(9)

    Expand section icon Mesh Tags

    Expand section icon Substances

    PMID: 28193904

    View Full Text