Strain 1485IN and its derivatives were found to have a large inversion extending to about 35% of the chromosome. Because of this, the question arose as to whether 1485IN had arisen from an Escherichia coli strain other than K12. However, 1485IN had a flagellar antigen and a restriction-modification system indistinguishable from those of W3110, a major line of K12, and had retained an amber suppressor and lambda sensitivity that are characteristics of W1485 from which this strain seems to have arisen. Strain 1485IN had acquired proline auxotrophy, but showed the same growth rate as W1485 in nutrient broth at 37 degrees C. Interrupted matings with Hfr strains of 1485IN revealed a gene arrangement of nalA-gal-trp-his-lac-proA-thrleu-ilv, in which gal, trp, and his were on the inverted segment. The termini of the inversion were inferred to be situated between tsx (9.5 min) and purE (12 min) and between his (44 min) and cdd (46.5 min).