In vitro transcription analysis of the viral promoter involved in c-myc activation in chicken B lymphomas: Detection and mapping of two RNA initiation sites within the reticuloendotheliosis virus long terminal repeat

A. A. Ridgway, R. A. Swift, Hsing-Jien Kung, D. J. Fujita

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Chicken syncytial virus, a member of the reticuloendotheliosis virus family, induces B-cell lymphomas in chickens that arise by transcriptional activation of the chicken c-myc gene. In vitro transcription studies on cloned tumor DNA containing a deleted chicken syncytial virus provirus integrated upstream from, and in the same transcriptional orientation as, the chicken c-myc coding region were utilized to map possible transcriptional promoters and initiation sites. In vitro transcripts extending into c-myc sequences were initiated at two sites within the downstream long terminal repeat (LTR) closest to c-myc coding sequences. Both initiation sites have been precisely mapped by S1 nuclease and DNA sequencing methods. One site (I1) lies at the U3-R junction of the LTR, and the other site (I2) lies approximately 160 nucleotides upstream. Transcriptional control signals, including TATA- and CAAT-like sequences are present at appropriate distances upstream from the initiation sites. Both initiation sites are utilized to a similar extent. The upstream chicken syncytial virus LTR was also shown to be transcriptionally active in vitro. Two strong transcriptional initiation sites were also found in the LTR of spleen necrosis virus, a related member of the reticuloendotheliosis virus family; therefore, it seems likely that the existence of two transcriptional initiation sites is a common feature of the reticuloendotheliosis virus LTR, in contrast to other previously studied retroviral LTRs that exhibit one such site. The possible implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-170
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1985
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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