Cloning and molecular analysis of the dihydrofolate reductase gene from Lactococcus lactis

K. Leszczynska, A. Bolhuis, K. Leenhouts, G. Venema, P. Ceglowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Lactococcus lactis gene encoding trimethoprim resistance has been cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis. Several lines of evidence indicate that the cloned gene encodes dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). (i) It fully complements the fol 'null' mutation in E. coli. (ii) Nucleotide sequencing of the cloned fragment revealed the presence of one open reading frame encoding a protein that shares homology with the family of bacterial DHFR enzymes. (iii) Overexpression of this open reading frame in E. coli resulted in the appearance in cell extracts of a protein of the expected size as well as in a dramatic increase of DHFR activity. In cell extracts, the DHFR activity was not inhibited by low trimethoprim concentration. By Northern (RNA) blotting and primer extension analyses, the size and the start point of the dhfr transcript, respectively, have been determined. Results of these experiments indicate that in L. lactis the dhfr gene represents part of a larger transcription unit.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)561-566
Number of pages6
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 14 Feb 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • Biotechnology
  • Microbiology


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