Question
Asked Dec 10, 2019
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What is lac operon? Draw and/or identify the status of the lac operon in a given set of environmental conditions and/or cell mutations.

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Expert Answer

Step 1

The lac operon, otherwise called as lactose operon is an example of inducible operon. It consists of three structural genes which are necessary to acquire and process the lactose from the environment and breaking it into simple sugars like glucose and galactose. This operon is controlled by the same promotor and operator sequences. The three genes present in the lac operon are lac Z, lac Y and lac A. Each of these gene will produce a specific enzyme to process lactose.

The gene lac Z will encode for the enzyme β-galactosidase which cleaves the lactose into glucose and galactose. The gene lac Y will encode for the enzyme β-galactosidase permease which will pump β-galactosides into the cell. The gene lac A will code for the enzyme β-galactosidase transacetylase which can transfer acetyl group.

Step 2

a) Status of lac operon when lactose is unavailable:

When lactose is absent the repressor protein will bind to the operator regi...

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lacz lacY lacA promoter operator RNA polymerase-> repressor

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