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DNA. 1985 Jun;4(3):221-32.

Efficient expression in Escherichia coli of two species of human interferon-alpha and their hybrid molecules.


A new type of interferon (IFN)-alpha cDNA (IFN-alpha I') was identified in a cDNA library constructed from Namalva cells infected with Sendai virus. The nucleotide sequence of this cDNA showed homology, with the exception of two nucleotides in the coding region, with the previously identified IFN-alpha I gene (Lawn et al., 1981). An expression plasmid which directs the synthesis of the mature IFN-alpha I' peptide was constructed using vectors carrying the lpp/lac promoter and "runaway" replicon. Furthermore, hybrid genes were constructed by in vitro recombination of IFN-alpha I' and IFN-alpha A at a common restriction endonuclease site located at amino acid positions 121-122. While the specific antiviral and anticellular activities of IFN alpha A and IFN-alpha I' on human cells were comparable, the antiviral activity of IFN-alpha I' on mouse cells was 125-fold higher than that of IFN-alpha A. The specific antiviral activities of the hybrid IFNs on human and bovine cells were similar to that of the amino-terminal parental IFN peptide, while the anticellular activities on human cells of the alpha A/alpha I' hybrid were higher and that of the alpha I'/alpha A hybrid were lower than the parental IFN-alpha A and IFN-alpha I'.

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