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Biotechnology (N Y). 1994 Nov;12(11):1127-31.

A significantly improved Semliki Forest virus expression system based on translation enhancer segments from the viral capsid gene.

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Center for Biotechnology, Novum, Huddinge, Sweden.


We recently described a system for heterologous gene expression in a variety of mammalian cell types that is based on an efficiently replicating Semliki Forest virus (SFV) variant in which an RNA encoding a foreign protein replaces the RNA that normally encodes the viruses' structural polyprotein. Although expression levels are sufficiently high for many purposes, in general they are only 10% of the level of the polyprotein in a wild type SFV infection. Here we show that the first 102 bases of the viral capsid gene function as a translational enhancer, and that SFV vectors incorporating this RNA increase heterologous protein synthesis to the level of wild type polyprotein.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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