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Cell. 1983 Oct;34(3):779-87.

The human c-myc oncogene: structural consequences of translocation into the IgH locus in Burkitt lymphoma.


We have determined the sequence of the normal human c-myc gene and compared it to portions of a c-myc gene that has been translocated into the immunoglobulin heavy chain locus in a Burkitt lymphoma cell. The normal c-myc gene is encoded in three discrete exons divided by two large intervening sequences. Its mRNA is transcribed from two active promoters located about 150 nucleotides from one another. Each promoter initiates transcription of a long (approximately 550 bp) untranslatable leader sequence encoding the entire first exon. This exon and additional 5' flanking sequences are tightly conserved between mouse and man. In the Burkitt cell BL22, the rearranged c-myc gene retains both promoters and is unchanged in its amino acid coding domains. Translocation of this gene joins it to the immunoglobulin heavy chain switch region at a point approximately 1000 bp 5' to the dual c-myc promoters. These genes are joined in opposite transcriptional orientation. The structure of the translocated gene and the nature of its linkage to the immunoglobulin locus and the presence of two c-myc promoters and consequently two long leader sequences raise novel possibilities for the activation of an oncogene.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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