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Independent expression of the transforming amino-terminal domain of SV40 large I antigen from an alternatively spliced third SV40 early mRNA.

Zerrahn J., Knippschild U., Winkler T., Deppert W.

We found that simian virus 40 (SV40), in addition to the SV40 early proteins large T antigen (large T) and small antigen (small t), codes for a third early protein with a molecular weight of 17 kDa. This protein (17kT) is expressed from an alternatively spliced third SV40 early mRNA, using a splice donor site at position 4425 and a splice acceptor site at position 3679 of the SV40 genome. The 17kT protein consists of 135 amino acids. Of these, 131 correspond to the amino-terminus of large T, while the four carboxy-terminal amino acids are unique and encoded by a different reading frame. 17kT mRNA, and the corresponding protein, were found in all SV40 transformed cells analyzed, as well as in SV40 infected cells. Transfection of a cDNA expression vector encoding the 17kT protein into rat F111 fibroblasts induced phenotypic transformation of these cells. The expression of the transforming amino-terminal domain of large T as an independent 17kT protein might provide a means for individually regulating the various functions associated with this domain.

EMBO J. 12:4739-4746(1993) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]