Thermosensitive Bacillus subtilis mutants which lyse at the non-permissive temperature

J Gen Microbiol. 1987 May;133(5):1159-70. doi: 10.1099/00221287-133-5-1159.


A collection of 655 thermosensitive mutants of Bacillus subtilis 168, obtained by indirect selection, was screened for those lysing at the non-permissive temperature. Thirty-three mutations thus identified were distributed by transformation into eight linkage groups designated lssA to lssH. The distribution was non-random. With the exception of group A, all groups were small, suggesting that mutations identified in each of them may map in one gene only. Linkage groups identified here were mapped in four different regions of the B. subtilis chromosome and their positions relative to reference markers were the following: (i) aroI-lssA-dal-purB; (ii) metC-lssB-lssC-furA-pyrE-cysC-lssD; (iii) lssF-gtaA-lssG-hisA-lssH-cysB; and (iv) cysA-lssE-dnaC-purA. Kinetics of N-acetyl-D-[1-14C]glucosamine incorporation revealed that groups A, B, C, D and F are deficient in peptidoglycan synthesis at the restrictive temperature. In group G, anomalies at the cell wall level were suggested by incorporation and growth curves. It appears that in almost all known cases, thermosensitive lysis mutations in B. subtilis either affect genes involved in peptidoglycan synthesis or lead, more or less directly, to induction of prophages.

MeSH terms

  • Bacillus subtilis / genetics*
  • Bacteriolysis*
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Genetic Linkage
  • Mutation*
  • Temperature*
  • Transduction, Genetic
  • Transformation, Bacterial