Bacterial DNA supercoiling and [ATP]/[ADP] ratio: Changes associated with salt shock

L. S. Hsieh, J. Rouviere-Yaniv, K. Drlica

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160 Scopus citations


When Escherichia coli K-12 was shifted from a medium lacking salt to one containing 0.5 M NaCl, both the [ATP]/[ADP] ratio and negative supercoiling of plasmid DNA increased within a few minutes. After about 10 min both declined, eventually reaching a level slightly above that observed with cells growing exponentially in the absence of salt. Since in vitro the [ATP]/[ADP] ratio influences the level of supercoiling generated by gyrase (H. Westerhoff, M. O'Dea, A. Maxwell, and M. Gellert, Cell Biophys. 12:157-181, 1988), the physiological response of supercoiling to salt shock is most easily explained by the sensitivity of gyrase to changes in the intracellular [ATP]/[ADP] ratio. This raises the possibility that the [ATP]/[ADP] ratio is an important factor in the control of supercoiling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3914-3917
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of bacteriology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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