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We report the cloning and sequencing of three M. tuberculosis genes encoding proteins homologous to E. coli PstA, PstC and PstB. They are tentatively called pstA-2, pstC-1 and pstB. They encode proteins of 302, 336 and 275 amino acids, respectively. In E. coli, PstB is the ATP binding component and PstA/PstC are the two hydrophobic subunits of a phosphate permease belonging to the family of ABC (ATP-binding cassette) transporters. In mycobacteria, PstS-1, the phosphate binding subunit (Andersen and Hansen, 1989), is encoded by a gene directly surrounded by pstB, pstC-1 and pstA-2 within a potential operon (pstB, pstS-1, pstC-1, pstA-2). Phosphate uptake by whole, suspension grown, M. bovis BCG cells was measured and could be inhibited by a monoclonal antibody directed against the PstS-1 subunit, suggesting that these genes encode subunits of a functional mycobacterial phosphate permease.


M Braibant, P Lefèvre, L de Wit, P Peirs, J Ooms, K Huygen, A B Andersen, J Content. A Mycobacterium tuberculosis gene cluster encoding proteins of a phosphate transporter homologous to the Escherichia coli Pst system. Gene. 1996 Oct 17;176(1-2):171-6

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PMID: 8918249

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