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Neurosci Lett. 1990 Oct 16;118(2):185-8.

Regulation of herpes simplex virus immediate-early gene promoters in mouse neuroblastoma cells.

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Department of Biochemistry, University College and Middlesex School of Medicine, London, U.K.


The non-permissivity of C1300 mouse neuroblastoma cells for herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection is due to a failure of such cells to transcribe the immediate-early (IE) genes following viral infection. We have transfected both C1300 cells and permissive cells with constructs in which each of the 5 IE promoters drives expression of the readily assayable chloramphenicol acetyl transferase (CAT) gene. These experiments show that the lack of IE gene transcription in C1300 cells is due to the weak activity of the five IE promoters in these cells compared to that observed in a range of permissive cell types. This effect is mediated both by up-stream elements and by sequences present in the minimal promoter. The different effects of DNA concentration on the activities of the minimal and complete promoters suggests that the up-stream sequences act by binding a repressor factor present in C1300 cells whilst the weak activity of the minimal promoter results from the absence of a positive factor in such cells.

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