The gene of OE 28.3 was isolated by complementation of the Fec phenotype of recombinant lambda EMBL3 phages in a RecA strain. The subcloned restored resistance to UV and methyl methanesulphonate (MMS) exposure in mutants of . DNA sequence analysis showed that the coding region of the gene, specifying a protein of 352 amino acid residues, was preceded by an SOS box highly similar to those of and . The deduced amino acid sequence displayed highest homology to the RecA proteins from (87.8% identity) and (84.3% identity). In both the regulatory region and the structural gene, a relatively high degree of sequence divergence from the gene was observed. A mutant of was constructed by inserting a kanamycin resistance cassette into its gene. This mutant exhibited an increased sensitivity to UV irradiation and MMS, and was strongly impaired in homologous recombinational activity.


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