Gene Symbol: lit
Description: T4 phage exclusion protein; cell death peptidase, e14 prophage
Alias: ECK1125, JW1125
Species: Escherichia coli str. K-12 substr. MG1655

Top Publications

  1. Kao C, Snyder L. The lit gene product which blocks bacteriophage T4 late gene expression is a membrane protein encoded by a cryptic DNA element, e14. J Bacteriol. 1988;170:2056-62 pubmed
    Escherichia coli lit(Con) mutations cause a severe inhibition of gene expression late in infection by bacteriophage T4 owing to the overproduction of one, and possibly two, proteins (C. Kao, E. Gumbs, and L. Snyder, J. Bacteriol...
  2. Georgiou T, Yu Y, Ekunwe S, Buttner M, Zuurmond A, Kraal B, et al. Specific peptide-activated proteolytic cleavage of Escherichia coli elongation factor Tu. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1998;95:2891-5 pubmed
    ..the best-characterized examples of phage exclusion is the exclusion of T-even phages such as T4 by the e14-encoded Lit protein in many Escherichia coli K-12 strains...
  3. Kao C, Gumbs E, Snyder L. Cloning and characterization of the Escherichia coli lit gene, which blocks bacteriophage T4 late gene expression. J Bacteriol. 1987;169:1232-8 pubmed
    Escherichia coli lit mutations inhibit gene expression late in infection by bacteriophage T4. We cloned the lit gene from wild-type E. coli and three independent lit mutants...
  4. Champness W, Snyder L. Bacteriophage T4 gol site: sequence analysis and effects of the site on plasmid transformation. J Virol. 1984;50:555-62 pubmed
    The Escherichia coli lit gene product is required for the multiplication of bacteriophage T4 at temperatures below 34 degrees C...
  5. Snyder L, Blight S, Auchtung J. Regulation of translation of the head protein of T4 bacteriophage by specific binding of EF-Tu to a leader sequence. J Mol Biol. 2003;334:349-61 pubmed
    ..This binding was discovered because EF-Tu bound to Gol peptide is the specific substrate of the Lit protease that cleaves the EF-Tu between amino acid residues Gly59 and lle60, blocking phage development...
  6. Snyder L. Phage-exclusion enzymes: a bonanza of biochemical and cell biology reagents?. Mol Microbiol. 1995;15:415-20 pubmed
    ..In the activated state, the enzymes cleave evolutionarily conserved components of the translation apparatus, in one case EF-Tu, and in the other case tRNALys.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) ..
  7. Copeland N, Kleanthous C. The role of an activating peptide in protease-mediated suicide of Escherichia coli K12. J Biol Chem. 2005;280:112-7 pubmed
    ..Here we define the activation mechanism for Lit, a dormant suicide proteinase in Escherichia coli K-12...
  8. Cooley W, Sirotkin K, Green R, Synder L. A new gene of Escherichia coli K-12 whose product participates in T4 bacteriophage late gene expression: interaction of lit with the T4-induced polynucleotide 5'-kinase 3'-phosphatase. J Bacteriol. 1979;140:83-91 pubmed
    ..These mutants, which we call Lit mutants, define at least one novel gene at 25 min on the E. coli map...
  9. Greener A, Hill C. Identification of a novel genetic element in Escherichia coli K-12. J Bacteriol. 1980;144:312-21 pubmed
    ..In addition, e14 was found to be absent in both E. coli B/5 and E. coli C. The approach to mapping developed for this work could be used to map other fragments of E. coli deoxyribonucleic acid which have no known phenotype. ..

More Information


  1. Linder C, Carlson K, Albertioni F, Soderstrom J, Pahlson C. A late exclusion of bacteriophage T4 can be suppressed by Escherichia coli GroEL or Rho. Genetics. 1994;137:613-25 pubmed
    ..GroEL-suppression restored packaging to normal levels, perhaps by preventing GP23 from activating the host Lit protein; in addition DNA synthesis was delayed and reduced and cell lysis enhanced, demonstrating involvement of ..
  2. Kraal B, Lippmann C, Kleanthous C. Translational regulation by modifications of the elongation factor Tu. Folia Microbiol (Praha). 1999;44:131-41 pubmed
    ..T4 infection of E. coli may trigger a phase-exclusion mechanism by activation of Lit, a host-encoded proteinase...
  3. Bingham R, Ekunwe S, Falk S, Snyder L, Kleanthous C. The major head protein of bacteriophage T4 binds specifically to elongation factor Tu. J Biol Chem. 2000;275:23219-26 pubmed
    The Lit protease in Escherichia coli K-12 strains induces cell death in response to bacteriophage T4 infection by cleaving translation elongation factor (EF) Tu and shutting down translation...
  4. Copeland N, Bingham R, Georgiou T, Cooper P, Kleanthous C. Identification of essential residues within Lit, a cell death peptidase of Escherichia coli K-12. Biochemistry. 2004;43:7948-53 pubmed
    ..In strains of Escherichia coli K-12 infected with T4 phage this process is mediated by the host-encoded Lit peptidase...
  5. Bergsland K, Kao C, Yu Y, Gulati R, Snyder L. A site in the T4 bacteriophage major head protein gene that can promote the inhibition of all translation in Escherichia coli. J Mol Biol. 1990;213:477-94 pubmed
    The cryptic DNA element, e14, synthesizes a protein, Lit, which can inhibit gene expression late in T4 bacteriophage development...
  6. Yu Y, Snyder L. Translation elongation factor Tu cleaved by a phage-exclusion system. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1994;91:802-6 pubmed
    ..T4 multiples poorly in Escherichia coli strains carrying the defective prophage, e14; the e14 prophage contains the lit gene for late inhibitor of T4 in E. coli...
  7. Gottesman S. Protecting the neighborhood: extreme measures. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1998;95:2731-2 pubmed