Summary: Two spontaneous mutant plasmids of TOL plasmid pWW0 are described. pWW0-660 contains an 18 kbp deletion of the entire operon and pWW0-673 has a 3.4 kbp insert in the operator-promoter (OP1) region of In hosts containing either plasmid, -xylene was unable to act as a growth substrate or as an inducer of enzymes of the or of the operons. Complementation of these strains with a recombinant plasmid pWW0-3006 carrying the III region D (HD) of pWW0 restored the Mxy phenotype and the ability of -xylene to induce the operon. The cloned HD region had no regulatory function but carried the OP1 region, the entire structural gene and sufficient of to support growth on -xylene. was more precisely located on a 1.9 kbp /I subclone of the HD region. Comparison of the roles of -xylene and -methylbenzyl alcohol as inducers shows they are not equivalent and that whereas -xylene can induce only -methylbenzyl alcohol can induce both and The restoration of the induction of by -xylene is due to the presence of on the recombinant pWW0-3006, converting -xylene to -methylbenzyl alcohol.


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