In Escherichia coli, DNA replication termination is orchestrated by two clusters of Ter sites forming a DNA replication fork trap when bound by Tus proteins. The formation of a ‘locked’ Tus-Ter complex is essential for halting incoming DNA replication forks. However, the absence of replication fork arrest at some Ter sites raised questions about their significance. In this study, we examined the genome-wide distribution of Tus and found that only the six innermost Ter sites (TerA-E and G) were significantly bound by Tus. We also found that a single ectopic insertion of TerB in its non-permissive orientation could not be achieved, advocating against a need for ‘back-up’ Ter sites. Finally, examination of the genomes of a variety of Enterobacterales revealed a new replication fork trap architecture mostly found outside the Enterobacteriaceae family. Taken together, our data enabled the delineation of a narrow ancestral Tus-dependent DNA replication fork trap consisting of only two Ter sites.
Biology and Life Sciences, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.