The new gene mukB codes for a 177 kd protein with coiled-coil domains involved in chromosome partitioning of E. coli

EMBO J. 1991 Jan;10(1):183-93.


An Escherichia coli temperature sensitive mutant which produces spontaneously normal size anucleate cells at low temperature was isolated. The mutant is defective in a previously undescribed gene, named mukB, located at 21 min on the chromosome. The mukB gene codes for a large protein (approximately 180 kd). A 1534 amino acid protein (176,826 daltons) was deduced from the nucleotide sequence of the mukB gene. Computer analysis revealed that the predicted MukB protein has distinct domains: an amino-terminal globular domain containing a nucleotide binding sequence, a central region containing two alpha-helical coiled-coil domains and one globular domain, and a carboxyl-terminal globular domain which is rich in Cys, Arg and Lys. A 180 kd protein detected in wild-type cell extracts by electrophoresis is absent in mukB null mutants. Although the null mutants are not lethal at low temperature, the absence of MukB leads to aberrant chromosome partitioning. At high temperature the mukB null mutants cannot form colonies and many nucleoids are distributed irregularly along elongated cells. We conclude that the MukB protein is required for chromosome partitioning in E. coli.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics*
  • Base Sequence
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone*
  • Chromosomes, Bacterial / physiology*
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • DNA, Bacterial / isolation & purification
  • Escherichia coli / cytology
  • Escherichia coli / genetics*
  • Escherichia coli Proteins*
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Genotype
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • Mutation
  • Protein Conformation
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Escherichia coli Proteins
  • MukB protein, E coli

Associated data

  • GENBANK/M38402
  • GENBANK/M55400
  • GENBANK/M55401
  • GENBANK/M55402
  • GENBANK/M63930
  • GENBANK/M65224
  • GENBANK/S60919
  • GENBANK/S60920
  • GENBANK/X57550
  • GENBANK/X58577
  • GENBANK/X59082