, Volume 210, Issue 1, pp 135-139

Selection procedure for deregulated iron transport mutants (fur) in Escherichia coli K 12: fur not only affects iron metabolism

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A selection procedure using Mn2+ is described. A high percentage of the Mn2+ resistant mutants had constitutive iron transport systems. By P1 transduction, and complementation with the cloned fur gene it could be shown that nearly all the mutants constitutive in the expression of the operon fusion fiu::λplacMu were only defective in fur. High concentrations of manganese inhibited the derepression of an iron-regulated lac operon fusion. In another iron-regulated lac operon fusion that was inducible by iron, manganese also induced the production of β-galactosidase. Most of the fur mutants isolated (80%) were not able to grow on succinate, fumarate or acetate. After transformation with a fur + plasmid all 39 mutants tested were able to grow on succinate. In fur mutants the presence of succinate in the growth medium reduced succinate uptake rates by 50%–70%. Succinate dehydrogenase activity was reduced to 10% of that of the parent strain.

Communicated by J. Lengeler