Gene Symbol: phoU
Description: negative regulator of PhoR/PhoB two-component regulator
Alias: ECK3717, JW3702, phoT
Species: Escherichia coli str. K-12 substr. MG1655

Top Publications

  1. Rice C, Pollard J, Lewis Z, McCleary W. Employment of a promoter-swapping technique shows that PhoU modulates the activity of the PstSCAB2 ABC transporter in Escherichia coli. Appl Environ Microbiol. 2009;75:573-82 pubmed publisher
    ..e., with two PstB proteins) is the primary P(i) transporter. Expression from the pstSCAB-phoU operon is regulated by the PhoB/PhoR two-component regulatory system...
  2. Surin B, Dixon N, Rosenberg H. Purification of the phoU protein, a negative regulator of the pho regulon of Escherichia coli K-12. J Bacteriol. 1986;168:631-5 pubmed
    Thermally induced transcription of the phoU gene under control of the major leftward promoter, pL, of phage lambda resulted in production of the PhoU protein to compose approximately 5% of the total cell protein...
  3. Amemura M, Shinagawa H, Makino K, Otsuji N, Nakata A. Cloning of and complementation tests with alkaline phosphatase regulatory genes (phoS and phoT) of Escherichia coli. J Bacteriol. 1982;152:692-701 pubmed
    The regulatory genes of alkaline phosphatase, phoS and phoT, of Escherichia coli were cloned on pBR322, initially as an 11.8-kilobase EcoRI fragment. A restriction map of the hybrid plasmid was established...
  4. Shinagawa H, Makino K, Nakata A. Regulation of the pho regulon in Escherichia coli K-12. Genetic and physiological regulation of the positive regulatory gene phoB. J Mol Biol. 1983;168:477-88 pubmed
    ..Both genes were constitutively expressed in phoR, phoS, phoT and phoU mutants and were not expressed in a phoR-phoM double mutant...
  5. Morohoshi T, Maruo T, Shirai Y, Kato J, Ikeda T, Takiguchi N, et al. Accumulation of inorganic polyphosphate in phoU mutants of Escherichia coli and Synechocystis sp. strain PCC6803. Appl Environ Microbiol. 2002;68:4107-10 pubmed
    ..The polyP accumulation in these mutants was ascribed to a mutation of the phoU gene that encodes a negative regulator of the P(i) regulon...
  6. Gardner S, Johns K, Tanner R, McCleary W. The PhoU protein from Escherichia coli interacts with PhoR, PstB, and metals to form a phosphate-signaling complex at the membrane. J Bacteriol. 2014;196:1741-52 pubmed publisher
    ..The molecular mechanisms of Pi signal transduction are not completely understood. PhoU, along with the high-affinity, Pi-specific ATP-binding cassette transporter PstSCAB and the two-component proteins ..
  7. Ting H, Kouzminova E, Kuzminov A. Synthetic lethality with the dut defect in Escherichia coli reveals layers of DNA damage of increasing complexity due to uracil incorporation. J Bacteriol. 2008;190:5841-54 pubmed publisher
    ..In addition, two SL(dut) inserts (phoU and degP) identify functions that could act to support the weakened activity of the Dut-1 mutant enzyme, suggesting ..
  8. Surin B, Jans D, Fimmel A, Shaw D, Cox G, Rosenberg H. Structural gene for the phosphate-repressible phosphate-binding protein of Escherichia coli has its own promoter: complete nucleotide sequence of the phoS gene. J Bacteriol. 1984;157:772-8 pubmed
    ..However, an alternative promoter region has been identified on the basis of homology with the promoter regions of the phoA and phoE genes, the structural genes for alkaline phosphatase and outer-membrane pore protein e, respectively. ..
  9. Li Y, Zhang Y. PhoU is a persistence switch involved in persister formation and tolerance to multiple antibiotics and stresses in Escherichia coli. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2007;51:2092-9 pubmed
    ..In Escherichia coli, we identified a new persistence gene, phoU, whose inactivation leads to a generalized higher susceptibility than that of the parent strain to a diverse range ..

More Information


  1. Buckles E, Wang X, Lockatell C, Johnson D, Donnenberg M. PhoU enhances the ability of extraintestinal pathogenic Escherichia coli strain CFT073 to colonize the murine urinary tract. Microbiology. 2006;152:153-60 pubmed
    The phoU gene is the last cistron in the pstSCAB-phoU operon and functions as a negative regulator of the Pho regulon...
  2. Haldimann A, Daniels L, Wanner B. Use of new methods for construction of tightly regulated arabinose and rhamnose promoter fusions in studies of the Escherichia coli phosphate regulon. J Bacteriol. 1998;180:1277-86 pubmed
    ..of the Pi-specific transport (Pst) system (PstA, PstB, PstC, and PstS), and a protein of unknown function called PhoU. Here we examined the effects of uncoupling PhoB synthesis and PhoR synthesis from their normal controls by placing ..
  3. Lamarche M, Wanner B, Crépin S, Harel J. The phosphate regulon and bacterial virulence: a regulatory network connecting phosphate homeostasis and pathogenesis. FEMS Microbiol Rev. 2008;32:461-73 pubmed publisher
    ..that, through an interaction with the ABC-type phosphate-specific transport (Pst) system and a protein called PhoU, somehow senses environmental inorganic phosphate (P(i)) levels...
  4. Baek J, Kang Y, Lee S. Transcript and protein level analyses of the interactions among PhoB, PhoR, PhoU and CreC in response to phosphate starvation in Escherichia coli. FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2007;277:254-9 pubmed
    ..The interactions among PhoB, PhoR, PhoU and CreC were investigated at transcript and protein levels using real-time PCR and fluorescence resonance energy ..
  5. Bairoch A, Apweiler R, Wu C, Barker W, Boeckmann B, Ferro S, et al. The Universal Protein Resource (UniProt). Nucleic Acids Res. 2005;33:D154-9 pubmed
    ..The UniProt databases can be accessed online ( or downloaded in several formats ( New releases are published every two weeks. ..
  6. Aguena M, Spira B. RT-PCR of long prokaryotic operon transcripts without DNase treatment. J Microbiol Methods. 2003;55:419-23 pubmed
    ..To avoid amplification of genomic DNA, the hybrid-primer molecules that were not incorporated into the first-strand cDNA were removed by RNase H treatment followed by ultrafiltration...
  7. Aguena M, Yagil E, Spira B. Transcriptional analysis of the pst operon of Escherichia coli. Mol Genet Genomics. 2002;268:518-24 pubmed
    ..coli, which encodes the phosphate-specific transport system, is composed of five genes, pstS, pstC, pstA, pstB and phoU, whose transcription is induced by phosphate starvation...
  8. Steed P, Wanner B. Use of the rep technique for allele replacement to construct mutants with deletions of the pstSCAB-phoU operon: evidence of a new role for the PhoU protein in the phosphate regulon. J Bacteriol. 1993;175:6797-809 pubmed
    The phosphate regulon is negatively regulated by the PstSCAB transporter and PhoU protein by a mechanism that may involve protein-protein interaction(s) between them and the Pi sensor protein, PhoR...
  9. Magota K, Otsuji N, Miki T, Horiuchi T, Tsunasawa S, Kondo J, et al. Nucleotide sequence of the phoS gene, the structural gene for the phosphate-binding protein of Escherichia coli. J Bacteriol. 1984;157:909-17 pubmed
    ..the nucleotide sequence of the regulatory region of phoS was compared with those of phoA and phoE, the genes constituting the pho regulon. ..
  10. Nakata A, Amemura M, Shinagawa H. Regulation of the phosphate regulon in Escherichia coli K-12: regulation of the negative regulatory gene phoU and identification of the gene product. J Bacteriol. 1984;159:979-85 pubmed
    The phoU gene is one of the negative regulatory genes of the pho regulon of Escherichia coli. The DNA fragment carrying phoU has been cloned on pBR322 (Amemura et al., J. Bacteriol. 152:692-701, 1982)...
  11. Surin B, Rosenberg H, Cox G. Phosphate-specific transport system of Escherichia coli: nucleotide sequence and gene-polypeptide relationships. J Bacteriol. 1985;161:189-98 pubmed
    ..The complete sequence is transcribed counterclockwise, in the order phoS pstC pstA pstB phoU. Genetic complementation shows that of the four open reading frames in the new sequence, three correspond to known ..
  12. Schnetz K, Toloczyki C, Rak B. Beta-glucoside (bgl) operon of Escherichia coli K-12: nucleotide sequence, genetic organization, and possible evolutionary relationship to regulatory components of two Bacillus subtilis genes. J Bacteriol. 1987;169:2579-90 pubmed
    ..subtilis, for which data pertaining to regulation are not yet available, suggest a close evolutionary relationship among the regulatory components of all three systems. ..
  13. Amemura M, Makino K, Shinagawa H, Kobayashi A, Nakata A. Nucleotide sequence of the genes involved in phosphate transport and regulation of the phosphate regulon in Escherichia coli. J Mol Biol. 1985;184:241-50 pubmed
    The pstA(=phoT), pstB and phoU genes are situated at 84 minutes on the Escherichia coli genetic map...
  14. Muda M, Rao N, Torriani A. Role of PhoU in phosphate transport and alkaline phosphatase regulation. J Bacteriol. 1992;174:8057-64 pubmed
    The negative regulatory function of PhoU in alkaline phosphatase (AP) was suggested by the behavior of K10 phoU35 carrying a missense mutation whose product was detected by immunoblotting...