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Genetic evidence for a novel competence inhibitor in the industrially important Bacillus licheniformis.


ABSTRACT: Natural genetic competence renders bacteria able to take up and, in case there is sufficient homology to the recipient's chromosome, integrate exogenously supplied DNA. Well studied in Bacillus subtilis, genetic competence is-in several aspects-known to be differently regulated in Bacillus licheniformis. We now report on the identification of a novel, chromosomally encoded homolog of a competence inhibitor in B. licheniformis (ComI) that has hitherto only been described as a plasmid borne trait in the ancestral B. subtilis NCIB3610. Bioinformatical analysis that included 80 Bacillus strains covering 20 different species revealed a ComI encoding gene in all of the examined B. licheniformis representatives, and was identified in few among the other species investigated. The predicted ComI of B. licheniformis is a highly conserved peptide consisting of 28 amino acids. Since deletion of comI in B. licheniformis DSM13 resulted in twofold increased transformation efficiency by genetic competence and overexpression resulted in threefold decreased transformability, the function as a competence inhibitor became evident.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5503854 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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