By Mark Ptashne
The 1st variation of Mark Ptashne's 1986 ebook describing the rules of gene rules in phage lambda turned a vintage in either content material and shape, environment a typical of readability and unique prose that has infrequently been bettered. This variation is a reprint of the unique textual content, including a brand new bankruptcy updating the tale to 2004. one of the amazing new advancements are fresh findings on long-range interactions among proteins certain to greatly separated websites at the phage genome, and an in depth description of ways gene activation works.
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Extra info for A Genetic Switch: Phage Lambda Revisited
None of the λ operator sites is perfectly symmetric, and if we were to examine only one of them—OR2, for example—the symmetry would not be particularly striking. 2, a clear pattern emerges. The table lists the frequency with which various bases are represented at each position. 2. A symmetric DNA sequence. The sequence of the top strand, read left to right, is the same as that of the bottom strand read right to left. The black diamond indicates the axis of symmetry. 1. The six operator sites recognized by λ repressor and Cro.
Pattern of amino acid-base pair interactions. 11B. In each of the proteins the side chains (R groups) of amino acids 1, 2, 5, and 6 point toward the DNA, and those of residues 4 and 7 point toward the body of the protein. The arrow connecting the Ala repressor to the T:A base pair at position 5 is dashed because, although the presence of the Ala causes a preference for that T:A, the basis for this preference is not known. The figure omits three additional interactions: a Lys residue in λ repressor’s arm and an Asn residue just beyond the end of repressor’s helix 3 both contact the C:G found at position 6 of both OR 1 and OR 3.
In contrast, a single-site operator-repressor interaction (blue line) would react much more sluggishly to a change in repressor concentration. It is instructive to consider a hypothetical switch devoid of cooperativity. For example, if OR contained only a single site corresponding to OR2, the system might work, but only crudely. If this site bound a repressor dimer tightly enough to ensure 1000-fold repression in a lysogen, induction would occur only very inefficiently. Over 99% of the repressor would have to be inactivated to trigger lytic growth, and this is a difficult requirement to meet.
A Genetic Switch: Phage Lambda Revisited by Mark Ptashne