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Mol Cell Biol. 1983 May;3(5):819-28.

Control of cellular gene expression during adenovirus infection: induction and shut-off of dihydrofolate reductase gene expression by adenovirus type 2.


Infection of human cells by adenovirus results in multiple alterations of host gene expression. To examine the effects of viral infection on the expression of a single gene, a line of human cells was developed which is resistant to growth in methotrexate and which contains amplified RNA and protein specific for dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). Cytogenetic evidence indicated the presence of amplified DNA. Adenovirus infection of these cells caused an induction and subsequent decline in the synthesis of DHFR protein. The maximum DHFR induction occurred 16 to 19 h after infection and reached a level 2.5-fold greater than that observed in uninfected cells. Induction of DHFR protein synthesis was accompanied by concomitant increases in the level of steady-state DHFR-specific cytoplasmic RNA. The relative rate of DHFR mRNA production (i.e., the appearance of DHFR-specific mRNA sequences in the cytoplasm) also increased 2.5-fold during induction. Later in infection, the relative rate of DHFR protein synthesis declined, reaching a level below that observed in uninfected cells. This decline was accompanied by a similar decline in the steady-state levels of DHFR RNA and in the relative rate of synthesis of DHFR mRNA. These data suggest that adenovirus infection controls DHFR gene expression by increasing and subsequently decreasing the relative rate at which DHFR-specific mRNA sequences appear in the cytoplasm and enter the pool of mRNA available for translation.

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