Pseudomonas putida DOT-T1E is a solvent-tolerant strain able to grow with toluene as the sole C-source. Tn5 mutagenesis was carried out and a mutant unable to use toluene as the sole C-source was isolated. DNA was sequenced upstream and downstream of the site where the Tn5 was inserted. Analysis of the DNA revealed 13 open reading frames (ORFs) homologous to the tod genes for the toluene dioxygenase pathway of P. putida F1, which are organized in two operons: todXFC1C2BADEGIH and todST. The Tn5 was inserted at the todH gene. The role of the todXFC1C2BADEGIH operon in toluene metabolism was further confirmed in a todC1 mutant (generated by insertional inactivation), which was unable to use toluene as the sole C-source. Primer extension analysis identified a single promoter upstream from the todX gene. The -10 and -35 regions of this promoter showed no significant homology to known promoters. Expression from the todX promoter occurred in response to toluene, ethylbenzene, styrene, xylenes and other aromatic hydrocarbons. Expression from the todS gene was constitutive. Sensitivity to toluene of the todH and todC1 mutants was similar to that of the wild-type strain. This suggests that toluene metabolism is not involved in toluene tolerance.