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Cell. 1979 Nov;18(3):735-47.

Plus and minus strand leader RNAs in negative strand virus-infected cells.


Sendai virus and VSV minus strand genome RNAs, labeled specifically at their 3' ends with RNA ligase, were used as probes to detect leader RNA--that is, short transcripts (approximately 50 nucleotides) complementary to the exact 3' end of the minus strand genome. These probes have allowed the detection of plus strand leader RNAs in both Sendai virus and VSV-infected cells as well as in the virion transcriptase reactions. The use of a similar probe, prepared from the self-complementary ends of DI genome RNA and containing the 3' end of the plus strand antigenome RNA, has allowed the detection of a minus strand leader RNA of identical size in VSV-infected cells. Since the presence of DI genomes could not be detected by analytical sucrose gradient centrifugation in these VSV-infected cells, this minus strand leader RNA is apparently synthesized on the template formed by the exact 3' end of the antigenome RNA.

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