Mutants of rous sarcoma virus with extensive deletions of the viral genome

G. S. Martin, K. Radke, S. Hughes, N. Quintrell, J. M. Bishop, H. E. Varmus

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12 Scopus citations


Deletion mutants of Rous sarcoma virus (RSV) have been isolated from a stock of Prague RSV which had been irradiated with ultraviolet light. Quail fibroblasts were infected with irradiated virus and transformed clones isolated by agar suspension culture. Three clones were obtained which did not release any virus particles. Analysis of DNA from these non-producer clones with restriction endonucleases and the Southern DNA transfer technique indicated that the clones carry defective proviruses with deletions of approximately 4 × 106 daltons of proviral DNA. The defective proviruses, which retain the viral transformation (src) gene, contain only 1.7-2.0 × 106 daltons of DNA. Multiple species of viral RNA containing the sequences of the src gene were detected in these clones; some of these RNAs may contain both viral and cellular sequences. The protein product of the src gene, p60src (Brugge and Erikson, 1977), was also synthesized in the nonproducer clones. However these clones did not contain the products of the group-specific antigen (gag), DNA polymerase (pol), or envelope glycoprotein (env) genes, nor did they contain the 35 and 28 S RNA species which are believed to represent the messengers for these viral gene-products. The properties of these mutants indicate that expression of the src gene is sufficient to induce transformation. These clones may represent useful tools for the study of the expression of this region of the genome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)530-546
Number of pages17
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 30 1979

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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