The nrdB gene of bacteriophage T4 codes for the small subunit of ribonucleotide reductase and contains a 598-base self-splicing intron which is closely related to other group I introns of T4 and eukaryotes. Thirty-one mutants causing splicing defects in the nrdB intron were isolated. Twenty-three EMS-induced revertants for these 31 primary mutants were isolated by the strategic usage of the white halo plaque phenotype. We mapped these revertants by marker rescue using subclones of the nrdB gene. Some of these second-site mutations mapped to regions currently predicted by the secondary structure model of the nrdB intron. One of these suppressor mutants (nrdB753R) was found to be intragenic by marker rescue with the whole nrdB gene. However, this mutation failed to map within the nrdB intron. Splicing assays showed that this pseudorevertant restored splicing proficiency of the nrdB primary mutation to almost wild-type conditions. This is the first example of a mutation within the exons of a gene containing a self-splicing intron that is capable of restoring a self-splicing defect caused by a primary mutation within the intron. In addition, two other suppressor mutations are of interest (nrdB429R and nrdB399R). These suppressors were able to restore their primary 5' defect but in turn create a 3' splicing defect. Both of these revertants mapped in different regions of the intron with respect to their primary mutations. (C) 2000 Academic Press.
|Number of pages
|Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
|Published - 16 Feb 2000