A new cell division operon in Escherichia coli.
Gill DR., Hatfull GF., Salmond GP.
At 76 min on the E. coli genetic map there is a cluster of genes affecting essential cellular functions, including the heat shock response and cell division. A combination of in-vivo and in-vitro genetic analysis of cell division mutants suggests that the cell division gene fts E is the second gene in a 3 gene operon. A cold-sensitive mutant, defective in the third gene, is also unable to divide at the restrictive temperature, and we designate this new cell division gene fts X. Another cell division gene, fts S, is very close to, but distinct from, the 3 genes of the operon. The fts E product is a 24.5 Kd polypeptide which shows strong homology with a small group of proteins involved in transport. Both the fts E product and the protein coded by the first gene (fts Y) in the operon have a sequence motif found in a wide range of heterogeneous proteins, including the Ras proteins of yeast. This common domain is indicative of a nucleotide-binding site.