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J Virol. Mar 1979; 29(3): 1087–1098.
PMCID: PMC353269

Translation of bovine leukemia virus virion RNAs in heterologous protein-synthesizing systems.


Bovine leukemia virus 60 to 70S RNA was heat denatured, the polyadenylic acid-containing species were separated by velocity sedimentation, and several size classes were translated in a micrococcal nuclease-treated cell-free system from rabbit reticulocytes. The major RNA species sedimented at 38S and migrated as a single component of molecular weight 2.95 x 10(6) when analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The predominant polypeptides of the in vitro translation of bovine leukemia virus 38S RNA were products with molecular weights of 70,000 and 45,000; minor components with molecular weights of 145,000 and 18,000 were also observed. Two lines of evidence indicate that the 70,000- and 45,000-molecular weight polypeptides represent translation products of the gag gene of the bovine leukemia virus genome (Pr70gag and Pr45gag). First, they are specifically precipitated by a monospecific antiserum to the major internal protein, p24, and second, they are synthesized and correctly processed into virion proteins p24, p15, and p10 in Xenopus laevis oocytes microinjected with bovine leukemia virus 38S RNA. The 145,000-molecular weight polypeptide was immunoprecipitated by the anti-p24 serum and not by an antiserum to the major envelope glycoprotein, gp60. It contained all the tryptic peptides of Pr70gag and additional peptides unique to it, and thus represents in elongation product of Pr70gag in an adjacent gene, presumably the pol gene. The 18,000-molecular weight product was antigenically unrelated to p24 and gp60 and shared no peptides in common with Pr70gag, Pr45gag, or the 145,000-molecular weight polypeptide. It was maximally synthesized on a polyadenylic acid-containing virion 16 to 18S RNA, and we present evidence that this RNA is a 3' end-derived subgenomic fragment of the bovine leukemia virus genome rather than a contaminating cellular RNA.

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Selected References

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