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Regulation of chromosomal replication in Caulobacter crescentus.
The alpha-proteobacterium Caulobacter crescentus is characterized by its asymmetric cell division, which gives rise to a replicating stalked cell and a non-replicating swarmer cell. Thus, the initiation of chromosomal replication is tightly regulated, temporally and spatially, to ensure that it is coordinated with cell differentiation and cell cycle progression. Waves of DnaA and CtrA activities control when and where the initiation of DNA replication will take place in C. crescentus cells. The conserved DnaA protein initiates chromosomal replication by directly binding to sites within the chromosomal origin (Cori), ensuring that DNA replication starts once and only once per cell cycle. The CtrA response regulator represses the initiation of DNA replication in swarmer cells and in the swarmer compartment of pre-divisional cells, probably by competing with DnaA for binding to Cori. CtrA and DnaA are controlled by multiple redundant regulatory pathways that include DNA methylation-dependent transcriptional regulation, temporally regulated proteolysis and the targeting of regulators to specific locations within the cell. Besides being critical regulators of chromosomal replication, CtrA and DnaA are also master transcriptional regulators that control the expression of many genes, thus connecting DNA replication with other events of the C. crescentus cell cycle.
Caulobacter crescentus, DNA replication, DnaA, CtrA, Proteolysis, Response regulator
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