Adding pyrrolysine to the Escherichia coli genetic code

  • Namy O
  • Zhou Y
  • Gundllapalli S
 et al. 
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Pyrrolysyl-tRNA synthetase and its cognate suppressor tRNAPylmediate pyrrolysine (Pyl) insertion at in frame UAG codons. The presence of an RNA hairpin structure named Pyl insertion structure (PYLIS) downstream of the suppression site has been shown to stimulate the insertion of Pyl in archaea. We study here the impact of the presence of PYLIS on the level of Pyl and the Pyl analog N-ε-cyclopentyloxycarbonyl-l-lysine (Cyc) incorporation using a quantitative lacZ-luc tandem reporter system in an Escherichia coli context. We show that PYLIS has no effect on the level of neither Pyl nor Cyc incorporation. Exogenously supplying our reporter system with d-ornithine significantly increases suppression efficiency, indicating that d-ornithine is a direct precursor to Pyl. © 2007 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Methanosarcina barkeri
  • Pyrrolysine
  • Selenocysteine
  • Stop codon suppression
  • Translation termination

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  • Olivier Namy

  • Yu Zhou

  • Sarath Gundllapalli

  • Carla R. Polycarpo

  • Alain Denise

  • Jean Pierre Rousset

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