The BipA protein of Escherichia coli has intriguing similarities to the elongation factor subfamily of GTPases, including EF-Tu, EF-G, and LepA. In addition, phenotypes of a bipA deletion mutant suggest that BipA is involved in regulation of a variety of pathways. These two points have led to speculation that BipA may be a novel regulatory protein that affects efficient translation of target genes through direct interaction with the ribosome. We isolated and characterized suppressors of the cold-sensitive growth phenotype exhibited by ΔbipA strains and identified insertion mutations in rluC. The rluC gene encodes a pseudouridine synthase responsible for pseudouridine modification of 23S rRNA at three sites, all located near the peptidyl transferase center. Deletion of rluC not only suppressed cold sensitivity but also alleviated the decrease in capsule synthesis exhibited by bipA mutants, suggesting that the phenotypic effects of BipA are manifested through an effect on the ribosome. The suppressor effect is specific to rluC, as deletion of other rlu genes did not relieve cold sensitivity, and further, more than a single pseudouridine residue is involved, as alteration of single residues did not produce suppressors. These results are consistent with a role for BipA in either the structure or the function of the ribosome and imply that wild-type ribosomes are dependent on BipA for efficient expression of target mRNAs and that the lack of pseudouridylation at these three sites renders the ribosomes BipA independent. Copyright © 2008, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.