Summary: Five rRNA operons () were found by hybridization in the genome of ‘’ ATCC 13869 and ATCC 13032. ‘’ DSM 20412 differed from the other corynebacteria tested in showing six hybridizing HI bands. Two of the operons (D and E) were located in a single cosmid. Sequencing of the D operon showed that it contains a complete 16S rRNA-23S RNA-55 rRNA gene cluster. Phylogenetic studies using the complete 16S rRNA sequence showed that ‘’ is closely related to several species of the genus Corynebacterium but only distantly related to the type species and the authors suggest that it should be reclassified as . The 5′ end of mature 16S rRNA was identified by primer extension. Sequence elements similar to those of mycobacteria implicated in transcription antitermination (Boxes A, B, C) and in processing of the pre-rRNA to 16S rRNA were identified. An open reading frame encoding an -like sigma factor (named SigC) different from the previously reported SigA and SigB proteins was found upstream of in the opposite orientation. Both and seem to be expressed from a bidirectional promoter region.


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