The expression of many gene products required during the early stages of Bacillus subtilis sporulation is regulated by sinIR operon proteins. Transcription of sinIR from the P1 promoter is induced at the end of exponential growth. In vivo transcription studies suggest that P1 induction is repressed by the transition-state regulatory protein Hpr and is induced by the phosphorylated form of Spo0A. In vitro DNase I footprinting studies confirmed that Hpr, AbrB, and Spo0A are trans-acting transcriptional factors that bind to the P1 promoter region of sinIR. We have also determined that the P1 promoter is transcribed in vitro by the major vegetative sigma factor, final sigma(A), form of RNA polymerase.
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