Dye (Arc) Mutants: Insights Into an Unexplained Phenotype and Its Suppression by the Synthesis of Poly (3-hydroxybutyrate) in Escherichia Coli Recombinants

FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2006 May;258(1):55-60. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6968.2006.00196.x.


arcA codes for a central regulator in Escherichia coli that responds to redox conditions of growth. Mutations in this gene, originally named dye, confer sensitivity to toluidine blue and other redox dyes. However, the molecular basis for the dye-sensitive phenotype has not been elucidated. In this work, we show that toluidine blue redirects electrons to O2 and causes an increase in the generation of reactive O2 species (ROS). We also demonstrate that synthesis of poly (3-hydroxybutyrate) suppresses the Dye phenotype in E. coli recombinants, as the capacity to synthesize the polymer reduces sensitivity to toluidine blue, O2 consumption and ROS production levels.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins / physiology*
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Escherichia coli / metabolism*
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / genetics
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / physiology*
  • Hydroxybutyrates / metabolism*
  • Mutation
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Phenotype
  • Polyesters / metabolism*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Recombination, Genetic
  • Repressor Proteins / genetics
  • Repressor Proteins / physiology*


  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins
  • Escherichia coli Proteins
  • Hydroxybutyrates
  • Polyesters
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Repressor Proteins
  • arcA protein, E coli
  • poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate