2006 Volume 81 Issue 4 Pages 291-297
To study the mechanism of RecET-mediated illegitimate recombination, we examined the formation of λbio-transducing phage in Escherichia coli in the presence or absence of UV irradiation. We have previously reported that coexpression of RecE and RecT enhances the frequency of recA-independent illegitimate recombination. RecJOR proteins are required for this RecET-mediated illegitimate recombination, and RecQ suppresses it. Here, we showed that the frequencies of both spontaneous and UV-induced RecET-mediated illegitimate recombination events are reduced by a uvrD mutation. It should be noted that UvrD is required for illegitimate recombination only in the presence, but not in the absence, of RecET. In contrast, frequencies of RecET-mediated illegitimate recombination were not affected by ruvAB, ruvC, recG, and recN mutations. The frequency of spontaneous and UV-induced illegitimate recombination in the uvrD recR double mutant was comparable to that of the uvrD single mutant, suggesting that UvrD works at the same step as RecR in the RecET-mediated recombination pathway. Nucleotide sequence analyses of the recombination junctions showed that RecET-mediated illegitimate recombination detected in UvrD-deficient strain is short-homology-dependent. Based on these and previous results, we propose a model for the role of UvrD on RecET-mediated illegitimate recombination.