Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Hill, Stuart A.

Degree Name

B.S. (Bachelor of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Biological Sciences


Neisseria gonorrhoeae is the pathogen responsible for the sexually transmitted infection gonorrhea. Since gonorrhea is a prevalent infection disease, many antibiotics such as penicillin and ceftriaxone have been used to fight the bacterium, and treat the infection. However, a vaccine has yet to be discovered that can potentially prevent the infection from initially occurring. Due to the constant variability of the pilus structure of the bacterium, Neisseria gonorrhoeae is extremely difficult to develop a vaccine for. Periodically, the bacterium will alter the structure of the pilus by slightly varying the genomic sequence responsible for making the pilE polypeptide. This occurs through a process called genetic recombination. In N. gonorrhoeae, there are a set of transcriptionally silent genes, called the p/VS genes, which translocate a segment of their DNA, into the variable regions of the pilE gene. This process of genetic recombination is dependent on the RecA protein. Very little is known is about transcriptional regulation of the p//E gene. During our studies on p//E gene expression, mRNA sequences very similar to the p//S loci were shown being transcribed leading to the possibility that the p//S sequences are perhaps transcriptionally active, indicating possible promoter sites within the loci. Using the program Artemis, two such possible promoter sites in p//S 2 were indicated. Site directed mutagenesis to slightly alter the potential promoter sites will determine whether or not the sites can be confirmed as promoter sites. Following mutagenesis, if mRNA is abs


Includes bibliographical references.


20 unnumbered pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type