Characterization of pMRI 5.2, a rolling-circle-type plasmid from Lactobacillus plantarum BFE 5092 which harbours two different replication initiation genes.Plasmid 2013; 69(2):160-71P
Plasmid pMRI 5.2 from Lactobacillus plantarum BFE 5092 was sequenced and analysed. The sequence consists of 5206bp with a mol% G+C content of 35.8%. Nine putative open reading frames were identified. A typical pC194 family double strand origin (dso) and a putative single strand origin (sso) were predicted upstream of a rep gene. This rep gene encoded a replication protein of 314 amino acids exhibiting 98% amino acid sequence identity to the Rep protein of plasmid pLAB1000 from Lactobacillus hilgardii. A mob gene encoding a mobilization protein was also identified and this protein showed high amino acid similarity to Mob proteins from various L. plantarum plasmids. Downstream of the mob gene, a second putative replication region was identified that is similar to the pMV158 family of plasmids. It contains a dso as well as a putative sso, and encodes the 52 amino acid repressor-like protein RepA, the replication initiation protein RepB of 215 amino acids, and the 48 amino acid RepC that is similar to ORFD of the lactococcal plasmid pWVO1. RT-PCR and qRT-PCR expression analyses of the rep and repB genes showed that the repB gene was expressed at a higher level. To confirm that the plasmid replicated by the rolling-circle-type mechanism, the presence of a characteristic single strand intermediate DNA was shown to be produced during replication. Plasmid copy number was ca. 30 per equivalent chromosome copy number based on qRT-PCR analyses. The plasmid also encodes four additional putative proteins of unknown function. The unusual feature of a rolling-circle plasmid having two different plasmid-encoded replication initiation proteins from different replicon families suggests that the genes for these may have originated from different plasmids.