[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The principal means for microbial degradation of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) is through the biphenyl pathway. Although
molecular aspects of the regulation of the biphenyl pathway have been studied, information on environmental facets such as
the effect of alternative carbon sources on (polychlorinated) biphenyl degradation is limited. Here we explore the effect
of environmental conditions (e.g., carbon source and growth phase) on the variation in PCB degradation profiles of Burkholderia xenovorans LB400. Genome-wide expression patterns reveal 25 genes commonly up-regulated during PCB degradation and growth on biphenyl
to be upregulated in the transition to stationary phase (relative to growth on succinate) including two putative detoxification
pathways. Quantitative reverse transcription PCR (Q-RT-PCR) analysis of the upper biphenyl pathway (bphA, bphD, and bphR1), and detoxification genes in response to environmental conditions suggest associated regulation of the biphenyl pathway
and chloroacetaldehyde dehydrogenase. The response of genes in the upper biphenyl pathway to carbon source competition and
growth phase reveals inhibition of the biphenyl pathway by PCBs. Although PCBs are not degraded during growth on succinate
with PCBs, expression data indicate that the biphenyl pathway is induced, suggesting that post-transcriptional regulation
or active transport of biphenyl maybe limiting PCB degradation. Identification of the involvement of peripheral pathways in
degradation of PCBs is crucial to understanding PCB degradation in an environmental context as bacteria capable of biodegradation
experience a range of carbon sources and growth phases.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Stable isotope probing with [(13)C]biphenyl was used to explore the genetic properties of indigenous bacteria able to grow on biphenyl in PCB-contaminated River Raisin sediment. A bacterial 16S rRNA gene clone library generated from [(13)C]DNA after a 14-day incubation with [(13)C]biphenyl revealed the dominant organisms to be members of the genera Achromobacter and Pseudomonas. A library built from PCR amplification of genes for aromatic-ring-hydroxylating dioxygenases from the [(13)C]DNA fraction revealed two sequence groups similar to bphA (encoding biphenyl dioxygenase) of Comamonas testosteroni strain B-356 and of Rhodococcus sp. RHA1. A library of 1,568 cosmid clones was produced from the [(13)C]DNA fraction. A 31.8-kb cosmid clone, detected by aromatic dioxygenase primers, contained genes of biphenyl dioxygenase subunits bphAE, while the rest of the clone's sequence was similar to that of an unknown member of the Gammaproteobacteria. A discrepancy in G+C content near the bphAE genes implies their recent acquisition, possibly by horizontal transfer. The biphenyl dioxygenase from the cosmid clone oxidized biphenyl and unsubstituted and para-only-substituted rings of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners. A DNA-stable isotope probing-based cosmid library enabled the retrieval of functional genes from an uncultivated organism capable of PCB metabolism and suggest dispersed dioxygenase gene organization in nature.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 08/2009; 75(17):5501-6. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The biodegradation of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) relies on the ability of aerobic microorganisms such as Burkholderia xenovorans sp. LB400 to tolerate two potential modes of toxicity presented by PCB degradation: passive toxicity, as hydrophobic PCBs potentially disrupt membrane and protein function, and degradation-dependent toxicity from intermediates of incomplete degradation. We monitored the physiological characteristics and genome-wide expression patterns of LB400 in response to the presence of Aroclor 1242 (500 ppm) under low expression of the structural biphenyl pathway (succinate and benzoate growth) and under induction by biphenyl. We found no inhibition of growth or change in fatty acid profile due to PCBs under nondegrading conditions. Moreover, we observed no differential gene expression due to PCBs themselves. However, PCBs did have a slight effect on the biosurface area of LB400 cells and caused slight membrane separation. Upon activation of the biphenyl pathway, we found growth inhibition from PCBs beginning after exponential-phase growth suggestive of the accumulation of toxic compounds. Genome-wide expression profiling revealed 47 differentially expressed genes (0.56% of all genes) under these conditions. The biphenyl and catechol pathways were induced as expected, but the quinoprotein methanol metabolic pathway and a putative chloroacetaldehyde dehydrogenase were also highly expressed. As the latter protein is essential to conversion of toxic metabolites in dichloroethane degradation, it may play a similar role in the degradation of chlorinated aliphatic compounds resulting from PCB degradation.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 11/2006; 72(10):6607-14. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Burkholderia xenovorans LB400 (LB400), a well studied, effective polychlorinated biphenyl-degrader, has one of the two largest known bacterial genomes and is the first nonpathogenic Burkholderia isolate sequenced. From an evolutionary perspective, we find significant differences in functional specialization between the three replicons of LB400, as well as a more relaxed selective pressure for genes located on the two smaller vs. the largest replicon. High genomic plasticity, diversity, and specialization within the Burkholderia genus are exemplified by the conservation of only 44% of the genes between LB400 and Burkholderia cepacia complex strain 383. Even among four B. xenovorans strains, genome size varies from 7.4 to 9.73 Mbp. The latter is largely explained by our findings that >20% of the LB400 sequence was recently acquired by means of lateral gene transfer. Although a range of genetic factors associated with in vivo survival and intercellular interactions are present, these genetic factors are likely related to niche breadth rather than determinants of pathogenicity. The presence of at least eleven "central aromatic" and twenty "peripheral aromatic" pathways in LB400, among the highest in any sequenced bacterial genome, supports this hypothesis. Finally, in addition to the experimentally observed redundancy in benzoate degradation and formaldehyde oxidation pathways, the fact that 17.6% of proteins have a better LB400 paralog than an ortholog in a different genome highlights the importance of gene duplication and repeated acquirement, which, coupled with their divergence, raises questions regarding the role of paralogs and potential functional redundancies in large-genome microbes.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 11/2006; 103(42):15280-7. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Burkholderia xenovorans strain LB400, which possesses the biphenyl pathway, was engineered to contain the oxygenolytic ortho dehalogenation (ohb) operon, allowing it to grow on 2-chlorobenzoate and to completely mineralize 2-chlorobiphenyl. A two-stage anaerobic/aerobic biotreatment process for Aroclor 1242-contaminated sediment was simulated, and the degradation activities and genetic stabilities of LB400(ohb) and the previously constructed strain RHA1(fcb), capable of growth on 4-chlorobenzoate, were monitored during the aerobic phase. The population dynamics of both strains were also followed by selective plating and real-time PCR, with comparable results; populations of both recombinants increased in the contaminated sediment. Inoculation at different cell densities (10(4) or 10(6) cells g(-1) sediment) did not affect the extent of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) biodegradation. After 30 days, PCB removal rates for high and low inoculation densities were 57% and 54%, respectively, during the aerobic phase.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 05/2006; 72(4):2476-82. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcriptomic and proteomic analyses of Burkholderia xenovorans LB400, a potent polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) degrader, have implicated growth substrate- and phase-dependent expression of three benzoate-catabolizing pathways: a catechol ortho cleavage (ben-cat) pathway and two benzoyl-coenzyme A pathways, encoded by gene clusters on the large chromosome (boxC) and the megaplasmid (boxM). To elucidate the significance of this apparent redundancy, we constructed mutants with deletions of the ben-cat pathway (the DeltabenABCD::kan mutant), the boxC pathway (the DeltaboxABC::kan mutant), and both pathways (the DeltabenABCDDelta boxABC::kan mutant). All three mutants oxidized benzoate in resting-cell assays. However, the DeltabenABCD::kan and DeltabenABCD DeltaboxABC::kan mutants grew at reduced rates on benzoate and displayed increased lag phases. By contrast, growth on succinate, on 4-hydroxybenzoate, and on biphenyl was unaffected. Microarray and proteomic analyses revealed that cells of the DeltabenABCD::kan mutant growing on benzoate expressed both box pathways. Overall, these results indicate that all three pathways catabolize benzoate. Deletion of benABCD abolished the ability of LB400 to grow using 3-chlorobenzoate. None of the benzoate pathways could degrade 2- or 4-chlorobenzoate, indicating that the pathway redundancy does not directly contribute to LB400's PCB-degrading capacities. Finally, an extensive sigmaE-regulated oxidative stress response not present in wild-type LB400 grown on benzoate was detected in these deletion mutants, supporting our earlier suggestion that the box pathways are preferentially active under reduced oxygen tension. Our data further substantiate the expansive network of tightly interconnected and complexly regulated aromatic degradation pathways in LB400.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 02/2006; 72(1):585-95. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent microarray experiments suggested that Burkholderia xenovorans LB400, a potent polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB)-degrading bacterium, utilizes up to three apparently redundant benzoate pathways and a C(1) metabolic pathway during biphenyl and benzoate metabolism. To better characterize the roles of these pathways, we performed quantitative proteome profiling of cells grown on succinate, benzoate, or biphenyl and harvested during either mid-logarithmic growth or the transition between the logarithmic and stationary growth phases. The Bph enzymes, catabolizing biphenyl, were approximately 16-fold more abundant in biphenyl- versus succinate-grown cells. Moreover, the upper and lower bph pathways were independently regulated. Expression of each benzoate pathway depended on growth substrate and phase. Proteins specifying catabolism via benzoate dihydroxylation and catechol ortho-cleavage (ben-cat pathway) were approximately an order of magnitude more abundant in benzoate- versus biphenyl-grown cells at the same growth phase. The chromosomal copy of the benzoyl-coenzyme A (CoA) (box(C)) pathway was also expressed during growth on biphenyl: Box(C) proteins were approximately twice as abundant as Ben and Cat proteins under these conditions. By contrast, proteins of the megaplasmid copy of the benzoyl-CoA (box(M)) pathway were only detected in transition-phase benzoate-grown cells. Other proteins detected at increased levels in benzoate- and biphenyl-grown cells included general stress response proteins potentially induced by reactive oxygen species formed during aerobic aromatic catabolism. Finally, C(1) metabolic enzymes were present in biphenyl-grown cells during transition phase. This study provides insights into the physiological roles and integration of apparently redundant catabolic pathways in large-genome bacteria and establishes a basis for investigating the PCB-degrading abilities of this strain.
Journal of Bacteriology 01/2006; 187(23):7996-8005. · 3.19 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We designed and successfully implemented the use of in situ-synthesized 45-mer oligonucleotide DNA microarrays (XeoChips) for genome-wide expression profiling of Burkholderia xenovorans LB400, which is among the best aerobic polychlorinated biphenyl degraders known so far. We conducted differential gene expression profiling during exponential growth on succinate, benzoate, and biphenyl as sole carbon sources and investigated the transcriptome of early-stationary-phase cells grown on biphenyl. Based on these experiments, we outlined metabolic pathways and summarized other cellular functions in the organism relevant for biphenyl and benzoate degradation. All genes previously identified as being directly involved in biphenyl degradation were up-regulated when cells were grown on biphenyl compared to expression in succinate-grown cells. For benzoate degradation, however, genes for an aerobic coenzyme A activation pathway were up-regulated in biphenyl-grown cells, while the pathway for benzoate degradation via hydroxylation was up-regulated in benzoate-grown cells. The early-stationary-phase biphenyl-grown cells showed similar expression of biphenyl pathway genes, but a surprising up-regulation of C(1) metabolic pathway genes was observed. The microarray results were validated by quantitative reverse transcription PCR with a subset of genes of interest. The XeoChips showed a chip-to-chip variation of 13.9%, compared to the 21.6% variation for spotted oligonucleotide microarrays, which is less variation than that typically reported for PCR product microarrays.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 09/2004; 70(8):4961-70. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Spotted oligonucleotide microarrays potentially offer a wide scope of applications for microbial ecology, especially as they improve the flexibility of design and the specificity of detection compared to PCR product based microarrays. Sensitivity, however, was expected to be problematic, as studies with the more sensitive PCR-based cDNA microarrays indicate that only genes from populations contributing to more than 5% of the community DNA can be detected. We evaluated several parameters to increase sensitivity and then tested applicability for bacterial functional genomics. The optimal parameters were the use of 5'-C6-amino-modified 70-mers printed on CMT-GAPS II substrates at a 40 micro M concentration combined with the use of Tyramide Signal Amplification labelling. This protocol allowed detection of single copy genes belonging to an organism contributing to 1% or more of the total community. To demonstrate its application, we detected the specific aromatic oxygenase genes in a soil community degrading polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). This increase in sensitivity is important if oligonucleotide microarrays are to be used for simultaneous monitoring of a range of functions performed by different microorganisms in the environment.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A real-time PCR (RTm-PCR) assay using fluorescently labeled oligonucleotides (TaqMan probes) was used to detect and quantify the recombinant Rhodococcus sp. strain RHA1(fcb) in soil. One primer and probe set targeted a hypervariable region of the 16S rRNA gene unique to strain RHA1(fcb) and its phylogenetic relatives, and the other set targeted the recombinant 4-chlorobenzoate (4-CBA) degradation operon (fcb) and was strain-specific. The method had a 6-log dynamic range of detection (10(2)-10(7) cells ml(-1)) for both probes when DNA from pure cultures was used. Although the method was less sensitive in soil, the estimated number of cells in soil by real-time PCR corresponded to the measured number of RHA1(fcb) cells determined by colony-forming units.
Journal of Microbiological Methods 11/2002; 51(2):181-9. · 2.16 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Gram-positive bacterium Rhodococcus sp. strain RHA1, naturally containing the biphenyl pathway, was electroporated with a broad host range plasmid containing the 4-chlorobenzoate (4-CBA) degradation operon (fcb) isolated from Arthrobacter globiformis strain KZT1. The recombinant strain grew in medium containing 4-CBA and 4-chlorobiphenyl (4-CB) as the only source of carbon, with stoichiometric release of chloride and a molar growth yield on 4-CB that suggested utilization of both biphenyl rings. In resting cell assays, similar rates of degradation were observed for wild-type and recombinant strains for the most common eight congeners from the anaerobic dechlorination of Aroclor 1242, but the recombinant strain accumulated lower amounts of chlorinated meta-cleavage products and no 4-CBA. Recombinant cells inoculated at 10(4) cells/g into nonsterile soil amended with 4-CB grew to 6-10(5) cells/g, a density consistent with the 4-CB consumed. 4-CB was removed only in the inoculated soil, and the recombinant strain did not grow in the same soil when it was not amended with 4-CB. The fcb operon remained stable in the recombinant strain reisolated from soil after 60 days. This work provides proof of concept that a Rhodococcus strain constructed to grow on a PCB would grow in nonsterile soil if the appropriate chlorobiphenyl is available.
Environmental Science and Technology 03/2001; 35(4):663-8. · 5.26 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We studied the aerobic degradation of eight PCB congeners which comprise from 70 to 85% of the anaerobic dechlorination products from Aroclor 1242, including2-, 4-, 2,4-, 2,6-, 2,2'-, 2,4'-, 2,2',4-, and2,4,4'-chlorobiphenyl (CB), and the biodegradation of their mixtures designed to simulate anaerobic dechlorination profiles M and C. StrainsComamonas testosteroni VP44 and Rhodococcus erythreus NY05 preferentially oxidizeda para-substituted ring, while Rhodococcus sp. RHA1, similar to well known strain Burkholderia sp. LB400, preferably attackedan ortho-chlorinated ring. Strains with ortho-directed attack extensively degraded2,4'- and 2,4,4'-CB into 4-chlorobenzoate, while bacteria with para-directed attack transformed these congeners mostly into potentially problematicmeta-cleavage products. The strains that preferentiallyoxidized an ortho-substituted ring readily degradedseven of the eight congeners supplied individually; only 2,6-CB was poorly degraded. Degradationof 2,2'- and 2,4,4'-CB was reduced when present in mixtures M and C. Higher efficiencies of degradation of the individual congeners and defined PCB mixtures M and C and greater production of chlorobenzoates were observed with bacteria that preferentially attackan ortho-substituted ring. PCB congeners 2,4'-, 2,2',4-, and 2,4,4'-CB canbe used to easily identify bacteria with ortho-directed attack whichare advantageous for use in the aerobic stage of the two-phase (anaerobic/aerobic)PCB bioremediation scheme.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have cloned and characterized novel oxygenolytic ortho-dehalogenation (ohb) genes from 2-chlorobenzoate (2-CBA)- and 2,4-dichlorobenzoate (2,4-dCBA)-degrading Pseudomonas aeruginosa 142. Among 3,700 Escherichia coli recombinants, two clones, DH5alphaF'(pOD22) and DH5alphaF'(pOD33), converted 2-CBA to catechol and 2,4-dCBA and 2,5-dCBA to 4-chlorocatechol. A subclone of pOD33, plasmid pE43, containing the 3,687-bp minimized ohb DNA region conferred to P. putida PB2440 the ability to grow on 2-CBA as a sole carbon source. Strain PB2440(pE43) also oxidized but did not grow on 2,4-dCBA, 2,5-dCBA, or 2,6-dCBA. Terminal oxidoreductase ISPOHB structural genes ohbA and ohbB, which encode polypeptides with molecular masses of 20,253 Da (beta-ISP) and 48,243 Da (alpha-ISP), respectively, were identified; these proteins are in accord with the 22- and 48-kDa (as determined by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis) polypeptides synthesized in E. coli and P. aeruginosa parental strain 142. The ortho-halobenzoate 1,2-dioxygenase activity was manifested in the absence of ferredoxin and reductase genes, suggesting that the ISPOHB utilized electron transfer components provided by the heterologous hosts. ISPOHB formed a new phylogenetic cluster that includes aromatic oxygenases featuring atypical structural-functional organization and is distant from the other members of the family of primary aromatic oxygenases. A putative IclR-type regulatory gene (ohbR) was located upstream of the ohbAB genes. An open reading frame (ohbC) of unknown function that overlaps lengthwise with ohbB but is transcribed in the opposite direction was found. The ohbC gene codes for a 48,969-Da polypeptide, in accord with the 49-kDa protein detected in E. coli. The ohb genes are flanked by an IS1396-like sequence containing a putative gene for a 39,715-Da transposase A (tnpA) at positions 4731 to 5747 and a putative gene for a 45,247-Da DNA topoisomerase I/III (top) at positions 346 to 1563. The ohb DNA region is bordered by 14-bp imperfect inverted repeats at positions 56 to 69 and 5984 to 5997.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 06/1999; 65(5):2151-62. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cloning and expression of the aromatic ring dehalogenation genes in biphenyl-growing, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB)-cometabolizing Comamonas testosteroni VP44 resulted in recombinant pathways allowing growth on ortho- and para-chlorobiphenyls (CBs) as a sole carbon source. The recombinant variants were constructed by transformation of strain VP44 with plasmids carrying specific genes for dehalogenation of chlorobenzoates (CBAs). Plasmid pE43 carries the Pseudomonas aeruginosa 142 ohb genes coding for the terminal oxygenase (ISPOHB) of the ortho-halobenzoate 1,2-dioxygenase, whereas plasmid pPC3 contains the Arthrobacter globiformis KZT1 fcb genes, which catalyze the hydrolytic para-dechlorination of 4-CBA. The parental strain, VP44, grew only on low concentrations of 2- and 4-CB by using the products from the fission of the nonchlorinated ring of the CBs (pentadiene) and accumulated stoichiometric amounts of the corresponding CBAs. The recombinant strains VP44(pPC3) and VP44(pE43) grew on, and completely dechlorinated high concentrations (up to 10 mM), of 4-CBA and 4-CB and 2-CBA and 2-CB, respectively. Cell protein yield corresponded to complete oxidation of both biphenyl rings, thus confirming mineralization of the CBs. Hence, the use of CBA dehalogenase genes appears to be an effective strategy for construction of organisms that will grow on at least some congeners important for remediation of PCBs.
Applied and Environmental Microbiology 06/1999; 65(5):2163-9. · 3.95 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We studied the aerobic degradation of eight PCB congeners which comprise from 70 to 85% of the anaerobic dechlorination products from Aroclor 1242, including 2-, 4-, 2,4-, 2,6-, 2,2'-, 2,4'-, 2,2',4-, and 2,4,4'-chlorobiphenyl (CB), and the biodegradation of their mixtures designed to simulate anaerobic dechlorination profiles M and C. Strains Comamonas testosteroni VP44 and Rhodococcus erythreus NY05 preferentially oxidized a para-substituted ring, while Rhodococcus sp. RHA1, similar to well known strain Burkholderia sp. LB400, preferably attacked an ortho-chlorinated ring. Strains with ortho-directed attack extensively degraded 2,4'- and 2,4,4'-CB into 4-chlorobenzoate, while bacteria with para-directed attack transformed these congeners mostly into potentially problematic meta-cleavage products. The strains that preferentially oxidized an ortho-substituted ring readily degraded seven of the eight congeners supplied individually; only 2,6-CB was poorly degraded. Degradation of 2,2'- and 2,4,4'-CB was reduced when present in mixtures M and C. Higher efficiencies of degradation of the individual congeners and defined PCB mixtures M and C and greater production of chlorobenzoates were observed with bacteria that preferentially attack an ortho-substituted ring. PCB congeners 2,4'-, 2,2',4-, and 2,4,4'-CB can be used to easily identify bacteria with ortho-directed attack which are advantageous for use in the aerobic stage of the two-phase (anaerobic/aerobic) PCB bioremediation scheme.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The fsbA gene controlling the first step of 4-chlorobenzoic acid (4CBA) metabolism in the Gram-positive soil bacterium Arthrobacter globiformis KZT1 has been cloned and analysed in Escherichia coli. The E. coli minicells analysis showed that a polypeptide(s) with Mr = 58 kDa (and/or Mr = 32 kDa) can be the fcbA product(s). Despite the gene dose amplification and control of the E. coli inducible Plac promoter, the level of functional expression of the fcbA gene in E. coli cells seems comparable only with that in the parental KZT1 strain. Effective 4CBA dechlorination by recombinant cells during growth in the presence of substrate within a range of concentrations 0.1 g/l to 0.7 g/l as well as a sudden reduction in the reaction efficiency at higher substrate concentrations were observed.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The strains of Arthrobacter globiformis KZT1, Corynebacterium sepedonicum KZ4 and Pseudomonas cepacia KZ2 capable of early dehalogenation and complete oxidation of 4-chloro-, 2,4-dichloro-and 2-chlorobenzoic acids, respectively, have been analyzed for the origin of the genetic control of degradation. The occurrence and molecular sizes of plasmids in all the strains have been established. Plasmid pBS1501 was shown to control 4-chlorobenzoate dehalogenation in the case of KZT1 strain. The same possibility is proposed for plasmid pBS1502 for dehalogenation of 2,4DCBA by KZ4 strain. The chromosome localization of the genes controlling oxidation of 4-hydroxybenzoate in strain KZT1 is shown. Localization of the whole set of genes responsible for 2CBA degradation in the strain KZ2 chromosome is suggested.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Clostridium thermocellum total DNA Sau 3A fragments' library was constructed on the basis of shuttle vector pMK4 for the Escherichia coli - Bacillus subtilis. 14 clones with endoglucanase activity and one with beta-glucosidase activity were selected in E. coli cells. Recombinant plasmids pCE were characterized by structural instability of various degree in B. subtilis cells. The results of the physical mapping, analysis of gene products in E. coli mini-cells as well as the DNA-DNA blot hybridization have led to conclusion on cloning of 7 individual genes for endoglucanases. Up to 3 polypeptides of various molecular weight corresponding to the products of cel gene were revealed in E. coli mini-cells containing the recombinant plasmids. The hybridization analysis demonstrated considerable homology of the majority of cel genes.