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Gene. 1990 Apr 16;88(2):285-8.

Optimization of the hygromycin B resistance-conferring gene as a dominant selectable marker in mammalian cells.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Morse Institute for Molecular Biology, SUNY-Health Science Center, Brooklyn 11203-2098.


The HyR gene, conferring resistance to hygromycin B (Hy), has been modified for optimal expression in mammalian cells. Modifications to the HyR gene and its expression cassette include: (1) removal of all upstream start codons, (2) conversion of the region around the start codon to the consensus sequence associated with efficient translation initiation, and (3) removal of downstream splice donor and acceptor sequences. The resulting HyR gene is an efficient dominant selectable marker that is useful for studies requiring resistance from a low-copy-number gene driven by a promoter of moderate strength. The HyR gene was also tested for its compatibility with BPV vectors. Mouse C127 cells harboring pHyR-BPV plasmids exhibited properties of BPV-transformed cells and were resistant to toxic levels of Hy. The vectors were stable as episomes and present in high copy. The HyR gene thus joins the NmR (neo) gene as the only dominant selectable markers that are known to be compatible with BPV replication.

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