Genome-wide expression profiles of endogenous retroviruses in lymphoid tissues and their biological properties

Young Kwan Lee, Alex Chew, Ho H Phan, David G Greenhalgh, Kiho Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) constitute approximately 8-10% of the human and mouse genome. Some autoimmune diseases are attributed to the altered expression of ERVs. In this study, we examined the ERV expression profiles in lymphoid tissues and analyzed their biological properties. Tissues (spleen, thymus, and lymph nodes [axillary, inguinal, and mesenteric]) from C57BL/6J mice were analyzed for differential murine ERV (MuERV) expression by RT-PCR examination of polymorphic U3 sequences. Each tissue had a unique profile of MuERV expression. A genomic map identifying 60 putative MuERVs was established using 22 unique U3s as probes and their biological properties (primer binding site, coding potential, transcription regulatory element, tropism, recombination event, and integration age) were characterized. Interestingly, 12 putative MuERVs retained intact coding potentials for all three polypeptides essential for virus assembly and replication. We suggest that MuERV expression is differentially regulated in conjunction with the transcriptional environment of individual lymphoid tissues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)263-273
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 10 2008


  • Coding potential
  • Endogenous retrovirus
  • Genome
  • Lymph node
  • Spleen
  • Thymus
  • Transcription

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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