The sec and prl genes of Escherichia coli

Kristina L. Bieker, Gregory J. Phillips, Thomas J. Silhavy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

151 Scopus citations


Two general approaches have been used to define genetically the genes that encode components of the cellular protein export machinery. One of these strategies identifies mutations that confer a conditional-lethal, pleiotropic export defect (sec, secretion). The other identifies dominant suppressors of signal sequence mutations (prl, protein localization). Subsequent characterization reveals that in at least three cases, prlA/secY, prlD/secA, and prlG/secE, both types of mutations are found within the same structural gene. This convergence is satisfying and provides compelling evidence for direct involvement of these gene products in the export process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-310
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Bioenergetics and Biomembranes
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1990

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Cell Biology


  • Protein secretion
  • gene fusions
  • hybrid proteins
  • signal sequence
  • suppressors


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