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Nucleic Acids Res. 1980 Dec 20;8(24):5949-64.

The nucleotide sequence and transcript map of the herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase gene.


This paper presents the nucleotide sequence of the Herpes Simplex Virus thymidine kinase (tk) gene. The position on the DNA sequence corresponding to the 5' and 3' termini of tk messenger RNA have been mapped. The mRNA termini are separated by slightly more than 1,300 nucleotides. The same 2,300 nucleotide segment of tk coding strand DNA is fully protected from S1 nuclease digestion when hybridized to tk mRNA. The location and size of the mRNA-coding segment corresponds to a region of the viral DNA that is essential for tk gene expression in microinjected frog oocytes. The nucleotide sequence of the HSV tk gene exhibits an open translational reading frame of 376 codons that extends from the methionine codon most proximal to the 5' terminus of tk mRNA to a UGA stop codon approximately 70 nucleotides from the poly-A addition site. The results of these experiments indicate that the tk gene is not interrupted by intervening DNA sequences, and that certain oligonucleotide sequences adjacent to the termini of the tk gene are homologous to similarly positioned sequences common to structural genes of eukaryotic cells.

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