While most missense suppressors have very narrow specificities and only suppress the allele against which they were isolated, the sumA missense suppressor from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium is a promiscuous or broad-acting missense suppressor that suppresses numerous missense mutants. The sumA missense suppressor was identified as a glyV tRNA Gly3(GAU/C) missense suppressor that can recognize GAU or GAC aspartic acid codons and insert a glycine amino acid instead of aspartic acid. In addition to rescuing missense mutants caused by glycine to aspartic acid changes as expected, sumA could also rescue a number of other missense mutants as well by changing a neighboring (contacting) aspartic acid to glycine, which compensated for the other amino acid change. Thus the ability of sumA to rescue numerous missense mutants was due in part to the large number of glycine codons in genes that can be mutated to an aspartic acid codon and in part to the general tolerability and/or preference for glycine amino acids in proteins. Because the glyV tRNA Gly3(GAU/C) missense suppressor has also been extensively characterized in Escherichia coli as the mutA mutator, we demonstrated that all gain-of-function mutants isolated in a glyV tRNA Gly3(GAU/C) missense suppressor are transferable to a wild-type background and thus the increased mutation rates, which occur in glyV tRNA Gly3(GAU/C) missense suppressors, are not due to the suppression of these mutants.
- Received October 5, 2016.
- Accepted November 28, 2016.
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