[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DnaB and DnaI proteins conserved in low-GC content Gram-positive bacteria are apparently involved in helicase loading at the replication initiation site and during the restarting of stalled replication forks. In this study, we found five novel dnaB mutants and three novel dnaI mutants by screening 750 temperature-sensitive Gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus mutants. All of the mutants had a single amino acid substitution in either DnaB or DnaI that controlled temperature-sensitive growth, as confirmed by transduction experiments using phage 80alpha. DNA synthesis as measured by [(3)H]thymine incorporation, origin-to-terminus ratios and flow cytometric analysis revealed that the dnaB and dnaI mutants were unable to initiate DNA replication at restrictive temperatures, which is similar to previous findings in Bacillus subtilis. Furthermore, some of the mutants were found to exhibit asynchrony in the initiation of DNA replication. Also, a fraction of the dnaI mutant cells showed arrested replication, and the dnaI mutant tested was sensitive to mitomycin C, which causes DNA lesions. These results suggest that DnaB and DnaI are required not only for replication initiation and but also for regulation of its synchrony, and they provide support for the involvement of DnaI activity in the restart of arrested replication forks in vivo.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The murB gene encodes UDP-N-acetylenolpyruvylglucosamine reductase and functions in bacterial peptidoglycan biosynthesis. A plasmid carrying the murB gene restored the temperature-sensitive growth of six Staphylococcus aureus mutants, in which peptidoglycan biosynthesis stopped at a restrictive temperature. Specific activity of UDP-N-acetylenolpyruvylglucosamine reductase in extracts from the mutants was lower than that from wild-type cells. Nucleotide sequence determination revealed that each mutant had a single amino acid substitution in the murB gene and five of six mutations were located within domain 3, where the proposed substrate binding site is located. These results suggest that the murB gene is essential for growth of S. aureus and that domain 3 is important for the MurB activity.