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J Virol. 1988 Jan;62(1):226-33.

Cloning and characterization of a papillomavirus associated with papillomas and carcinomas in the European harvest mouse (Micromys minutus).

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  • 1Department of Microbiology, School of Life Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana 61801.


Individuals in a colony of European harvest mice (Micromys minutus) were diagnosed with a variety of skin tumors including papillomas, trichoepitheliomas, and sebaceous carcinomas. Papillomavirus group-specific antigens and viruslike particles were detected in the papillomas. A 7.6-kilobase supercoiled circular DNA, which was cleaved once by EcoRI, was visualized in papilloma extracts by low-stringency Southern blot hybridization with a bovine papillomavirus type 2 probe. The molecule was cloned in pUC18, and a restriction map was generated. The molecule was shown to be colinear with the genome of human papillomavirus type 1a by partial sequence analysis. The DNA hybridized to human papillomavirus type 1a, rabbit oral papillomavirus, and the genome of Mastomys natalensis papillomavirus at Tm - 33 degrees C but not to the DNAs of 13 other papillomaviruses. Transformation of NIH 3T3 or C127I cells by tail papilloma extracts or transfected viral DNA was not observed. All 17 tumors examined contained large amounts of viral DNA in a supercoiled, unintegrated form as revealed by Southern blot hybridization. Furthermore, many extracts (25 of 35) from normal organs and skin of individuals with lesions elsewhere on their bodies contained viral DNA. This represents the first reported molecular cloning of a papillomavirus genome from a mouse species.

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