Bacterial nucleoid-associated proteins, nucleoid structure and gene expression

Nat Rev Microbiol. 2010 Mar;8(3):185-95. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro2261. Epub 2010 Feb 8.


Emerging models of the bacterial nucleoid show that nucleoid-associated proteins (NAPs) and transcription contribute in combination to the dynamic nature of nucleoid structure. NAPs and other DNA-binding proteins that display gene-silencing and anti-silencing activities are emerging as key antagonistic regulators of nucleoid structure. Furthermore, it is becoming clear that the boundary between NAPs and conventional transcriptional regulators is quite blurred and that NAPs facilitate the evolution of novel gene regulatory circuits. Here, NAP biology is considered from the standpoints of both gene regulation and nucleoid structure.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / chemistry
  • Bacteria / metabolism*
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism*
  • DNA, Bacterial / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial*


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • DNA, Bacterial