, Volume 190, Issue 2, pp 309-314

Two pathways of division inhibition in UV-irradiated E. coli

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Summary

We have investigated the mechanism of division inhibition in E. coli following UV-irradiation or nalidixic acid treatment. After UV, two separate mechanisms, both dependent upon recA +, appear to block division. One mechanism is dependent upon sfiA and sfiB, is inhibited by low levels (4 μg/ml) of rifamycin and is expressed in tif mutants at 42° C. The second mechanism is independent of sfiA, and sfiB, is resistant to rifamycin and does not occur in cells lacking DNA replication forks. We suggest that this second mechanism is the result of the failure to terminate DNA replication in inhibited cells. Nalidixic acid inhibition of cell division also appears to involve both mechanisms but as found previously replication forks are also necessary to induce the sfi pathway.

Communicated by G. O'Donovan