Document Detail

Codon usage determines translation rate in Escherichia coli.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2474074     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
We wish to determine whether differences in translation rate are correlated with differences in codon usage or with differences in mRNA secondary structure. We therefore inserted a small DNA fragment in the lacZ gene either directly or flanked by a few frame-shifting bases, leaving the reading frame of the lacZ gene unchanged. The fragment was chosen to have "infrequent" codons in one reading frame and "common" codons in the other. The insert in these constructs does not seem to give mRNAs that are able to form extensive secondary structures. The translation time for these modified lacZ mRNAs was measured with a reproducibility better than plus or minus one second. We found that the mRNA with infrequent codons inserted has an approximately three-seconds longer translation time than the one with common codons. In another set of experiments we constructed two almost identical lacZ genes in which the lacZ mRNAs have the potential to generate stem structures with stabilities of about -75 kcal/mol. In this way we could investigate the influence of mRNA structure on translation rate. This type of modified gene was generated in two reading frames with either common or infrequent codons similar to our first experiments. We find that the yield of protein from these mRNAs is reduced, probably due to the action in vivo of an RNase. Nevertheless, the data do not indicate that there is any effect of mRNA secondary structure on translation rate. In contrast, our data persuade us that there is a difference in translation rate between infrequent codons and common codons that is of the order of sixfold.
M A Sørensen; C G Kurland; S Pedersen
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of molecular biology     Volume:  207     ISSN:  0022-2836     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Mol. Biol.     Publication Date:  1989 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1989-09-07     Completed Date:  1989-09-07     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  2985088R     Medline TA:  J Mol Biol     Country:  ENGLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  365-77     Citation Subset:  IM    
Institute of Microbiology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
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MeSH Terms
Bacterial Proteins / analysis
Base Sequence
Escherichia coli / genetics*
Lac Operon
Molecular Sequence Data
Nucleic Acid Conformation
Protein Biosynthesis*
RNA, Bacterial / genetics
RNA, Messenger* / genetics
Time Factors
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Bacterial Proteins; 0/Codon; 0/RNA, Bacterial; 0/RNA, Messenger

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