The origin of replication (oriC) region in some clinical strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis is a hot spot for IS6110 elements. To understand how clinical strains with insertions in oriC can replicate their DNA, we characterized the oriC regions of some clinical strains. Using a plasmid-based oriC-dependent replication assay, we showed that IS6110 insertions that disrupted the DnaA box sequence CCGTTCACA abolished oriC activity in M. tuberculosis. Furthermore, by using a surface plasmon resonance technique we showed that purified M. tuberculosis DnaA protein binds native but not mutant DnaA box sequence, suggesting that stable interactions of the DnaA protein with the CCGTTCACA DnaA box are crucial for replication of oriC plasmids in vivo. Replacement by homologous recombination of the CCGTTCACA DnaA box sequence of the laboratory strain M. tuberculosis H37Ra with a mutant sequence did not result in nonviability. Together, these results suggest that M. tuberculosis strains have evolved mechanisms to tolerate mutations in the oriC region and that functional requirements for M. tuberculosis oriC replication are different for chromosomes and plasmids.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology