Characterization of a plasmid-specified ribosome methylase associated with macrolide resistance

A. G. Shivakumar, D. Dubnau

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46 Scopus citations


The ermC gene of plasmid pE194 specifies resistance to the macrolidelincosamide-streptogramin B antibiotics. This resistance, as well as synthesis of the 29,000 dalton protein product of ermC, has been shown to be induced by erythromycin. Weisblum and his colleagues have established that macrolide resistance is associated with a specific dimethylation of adeninein 23 S rRNA. We show that pE194 specifies an RNA methylase that can utilize either 50 S ribosomes or 23 S rRNA as substrates. Synthesis of this methylaseis induced by low concentrations of erythromycin, and the enzyme is produced in elevated amounts by strains carrying a high copy number mutant of pE194. The methylase comigrates with the 29K ermC product on polyacrylamide gels. The purification and some properties of this methylase are described.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2549-2562
Number of pages14
JournalNucleic acids research
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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