Translational coupling of nasST expression in Azotobacter vinelandii prevents overexpression of the nasT gene. Academic Article uri icon


  • The nasST operon encodes the transcriptional regulators of assimilatory nitrate reductase operons in phylogenetically diverse bacteria. NasT is a RNA-binding antiterminator and helps RNA polymerase read through the regulatory terminator sequences upstream of the structural genes. NasS senses nitrate and nitrite and regulates the activity of NasT through stoichiometric interaction. In this study, we analyzed the nasST sequence in Azotobacter vinelandii and revealed that the nasS and nasT genes overlap by 19 nucleotides. Our genetic analyses suggested that translational initiation of NasT was coupled with NasS translation, a regulatory mechanism that prevents overproduction of NasT. The significance of tight control of nasT expression was demonstrated in a nasT-overexpression strain, where expression of the assimilatory nitrate reductase operon was deregulated.

published proceedings

  • FEMS Microbiol Lett

author list (cited authors)

  • Wang, B., Rensing, C., Pierson, L. S., Zhao, H., & Kennedy, C.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Wang, Baomin||Rensing, Christopher||Pierson, Leland S||Zhao, Hui||Kennedy, Christina

publication date

  • December 2014