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FEBS Lett. 1996 Sep 30;394(2):227-32.

In vitro synthesized SV40 cRNA is trans-spliced after microinjection into the nuclei of mammalian cells.

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Institut für Molekularbiologie und Biochemie der Freien Universität Berlin, Germany.


We present for the first time experimental evidence that in vitro synthesized RNA (cRNA) is trans-spliced after microinjection into the nuclei of mammalian tissue culture cells. The template used for cRNA synthesis was the early SV40 BstXl/BamHI DNA fragment. This DNA fragment encodes exclusively for the second T-antigen exon and contains the intact small t-antigen intron. To generate the corresponding mRNA (T1-mRNA) by trans-splicing, the cells utilize a 5' cryptic splice site located within the second T-antigen exon of one cRNA molecule which is spliced to the small t-antigen 3' splice site of another cRNA molecule. Formation of the T1-mRNA by trans-splicing was confirmed by RT-PCR analysis and DNA sequencing. Efficient trans-splicing required that competitive small t-antigen cis-splicing be inhibited by deletion of the small t-antigen 5' splice site. The T1-mRNA was not generated when the cryptic 5' splice site was mutated.

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