Nitrate reductase in Escherichia coli K-12: involvement of chlC, chlE, and chlG loci

J Bacteriol. 1982 Aug;151(2):788-99. doi: 10.1128/JB.151.2.788-799.1982.


We examined the properties of mutants of E. coli which are defective with respect to nitrate reductase activity. chlE::Mu cts and chlG::Mu cts mutants were all chlorate resistant, and the strains that we examined all synthesized nitrate reductase apoenzyme. We concluded that the chlE and chlG loci, like the chlA, chlB, and chlD loci, are involved in the synthesis of insertion of molybdenum cofactor. We identified at least four distinct phenotypic classes of chlC::Tn10 mutants, all of which were fully or partially sensitive to chlorate. Two of these classes may represent lesions in the structural genes for nitrate reductase subunits A and C. Two other classes may be altered in the regulation of the expression of nitrate reductase or other anaerobic enzymes. We propose the mnemonic nar for naming individual genes within the chlC locus.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Apoenzymes / genetics
  • Chlorates / pharmacology
  • Coenzymes*
  • Escherichia coli / enzymology
  • Escherichia coli / genetics*
  • Genes*
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Metalloproteins*
  • Molybdenum / metabolism
  • Mutation
  • Nitrate Reductases / genetics*
  • Pteridines / metabolism


  • Apoenzymes
  • Chlorates
  • Coenzymes
  • Metalloproteins
  • Pteridines
  • Molybdenum
  • molybdenum cofactor
  • Nitrate Reductases