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J Virol. 1996 Jul;70(7):4345-51.

The hepatitis B virus posttranscriptional regulatory element is composed of two subelements.

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  • 1Infectious Disease Laboratory, The Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, California 92037, USA.


The RNAs of the hepatitis B virus (HBV) contain a cis-acting regulatory element which facilitates the cytoplasmic localization of unspliced transcripts (J. Huang and T. J. Liang, Mol. Cell. Biol. 13:7476-7486, 1993, and Z. M. Huang and T. S. Yen, J. Virl. 68:3193-3199, 1994). Such localization is presumed to be mediated by cellular factors which interact with the element. The HBV posttranscriptional regulatory element (HBVPRE) can efficiently activate an RNA export reporter system in an orientation-dependent and position-independent manner. Deletion analysis reveals that the HBVPRE consists of two subelements which function synergistically. A synergistic effect was also observed when the 5' (PREalpha) or 3' (PREbeta) subelements were duplicated. The bipartite structure of the HBVPRE is reminiscent of reports that the high-affinity binding sites of the Rev-like proteins must be duplicated to function efficiently (M. Grone, E. Hoffmann, S. Berchtold, B.R. Cullen, and R. Grassmann, Virology 204:144-152, 1994; X. Huang, T.J. Hope, B.L. Bond, D. McDonald, K. Grahl, and T. G. Parslow, J. Virol. 65:2131-2134, 1991; and D. McDonald, T. J. Hope, and T. G. Parslow, J. Virol. 66:7232-7238, 1992).

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