Analysis of IS21-mediated mobilization of plasmid pACYC184 by R68.45 in Escherichia coli.Plasmid. 1983 Sep; 10(2):111-8.P
Escherichia coli plasmids like pACYC184 or pBR325 can be mobilized by the P-type plasmid R68.45, which carries a tandem duplication of insertion element IS21, at a frequency of 10(-3)-10(-5) per donor cell. Analysis of exconjugant cells revealed that plasmid mobilization occurs via cointegrate formation involving transposition of IS21. No resolution of cointegrates of pACYC184 and the P-type plasmid could be found in recA recipient cells. In the cointegrate, the E. coli plasmid is flanked by single copies of IS21 in direct orientation. After resolution of the cointegrate in recA+ recipients, the mobilizing plasmid R68.45 lost one copy of IS21 becoming indistinguishable from plasmid R68. It was shown that during mobilization, insertion element IS21 transposes to the mobilized plasmid. Insertion sites and orientations of IS21 in 33 pACYC184::IS21 insertion mutants have been determined: IS21 was found to be integrated in plasmid pACYC184 in different regions but only in one orientation. The IS21 tandem structure of plasmid R68.45 and its role in the mobilization process is discussed.