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Nat Rev Microbiol. 2013 Apr;11(4):239-51. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro2984. Epub 2013 Mar 11.

Regulation of human papillomavirus gene expression by splicing and polyadenylation.

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Department of Laboratory Medicine, Section of Medical Microbiology, Lund University, BMC-B13, room B1314c, 221 84 Lund, Sweden.


Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are small DNA tumour viruses that are present in more than 99% of all cervical cancers. The ability of these viruses to cause disease is partly attributed to the strict coordination of viral gene expression with the differentiation stage of the infected cell. HPV gene expression is regulated temporally at the level of RNA splicing and polyadenylation, and a dysregulated gene expression programme allows some HPV types to establish long-term persistence, which is a risk factor for cancer. In this Review, we summarize the role of splicing and polyadenylation in the regulation of HPV gene expression and discuss the viral and cellular factors that control these processes.

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