Identification and nucleotide sequence of the delta-lysin gene, hld, adjacent to the accessory gene regulator (agr) of Staphylococcus aureus

Mol Gen Genet. 1989 Nov;219(3):480-5. doi: 10.1007/BF00259623.


A Tn551 insertional mutation in the accessory gene regulator (agr) locus of the Staphylococcus aureus chromosome resulted in the decreased production of at least seven extracellular toxins and enzymes and a simultaneous increase in the production of protein A and coagulase (Recsei et al. 1986). Adjacent to this locus we have now identified another gene, hld, transcribed into a 0.5 kb RNA which codes for the staphylococcal delta-lysin. The expression of hld was totally repressed in a strain carrying the agr insertional mutation. Hybridization with strand-specific probes and primer extension analysis revealed that hld and agr are transcribed in opposite directions, starting 188 nucleotides apart. The hld gene is mainly expressed during the post-exponential growth phase and is totally repressed during early exponential growth. Determination of hld mRNA half-life in different growth phases indicated that this regulation is at the level of transcription.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics*
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Bacterial
  • Genes, Regulator*
  • Hemolysin Proteins
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Staphylococcus aureus / genetics*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / growth & development
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Hemolysin Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • delta hemolysin protein, Staphylococcus aureus