In the Pho regulon is controlled by a sensor and regulator protein pair, PhoR and PhoP, that respond to phosphate concentrations. To facilitate studies of the Pho regulon, a strain with an altered PhoR protein was isolated by mutagenesis. The mutation in this strain () leads to the production of a PhoR sensor kinase that, unlike the wild-type, is functionally active in phosphate-replete conditions. The lesion in was shown to be a single base change that results in an Arg to Ser substitution in a region of PhoR that is highly conserved in histidine sensor kinases. While a -negative mutant was unable to induce the synthesis of cell wall teichuronic acid under phosphate-limited conditions, the mutant showed a relative increase in teichuronic acid and a decrease in teichoic acid, even under phosphate-replete conditions. The latter suggests that some or all of the genes required for teichuronic acid synthesis are members of the Pho regulon.


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