The spliced structures of adenovirus 2 fiber message and the other late mRNAs

Academic Article


  • All late adenovirus 2 messenger RNAs, except perhaps that for peptide IX, are composite molecules with sequences derived from at least two to five or more separate portions of the genome, as determined by electron microscopic analyses of polysomal RNA hybridized to single- or double-stranded DNA. We previously reported that eight different rightward-transcribed mRNAs contain, at their 5′ ends, a common three-part leader sequence derived from coordinates 16.6, 19.6 and 26.6, and that a ninth mRNA consists of sequences from 4.6-6.1 linked directly to those from 9.7-11.0 (Chow et al., 1977a; revised coordinates). We now demonstrate that four additional RNA species also have the same tripartite leader joined to messages with 5′ ends located at coordinates at 29.1, 30.5, 33.9 and 42.8. The RNA transcript extending from 29.1-39.0 covers most or all of the viral associated (VA) RNA genes (29.0-30.1). The late RNAs can be grouped into several families of transcripts in which two or three mRNAs have the same 3′ end and 3′ proximal sequences, but differ substantially in length at the 5′ end and, therefore, the coordinate at which the leader sequences are attached to the main body of the message. The number of RNA species transcribed from the Ad2 chromosome between coordinates 29 and 50 exceeds the number of identified Ad2 proteins. Several pairs of messages differing in length by a few percent may thus encode the same protein or have a precursor-product relationship. We have also found that a subpopulation of the polysomal mRNAs for the fiber protein, the most distal gene (86.3-91.2) in the rightward transcription unit, has a fourth leader component "y" (78.6-79.1) in addition to the common tripartite leader sequences. Less frequent fiber RNA species have fifth "x" (76.9-77.3) and/or sixth "z" (84.7-85.1) leader segments. Transcripts with x, y or z segments might be processing intermediates, and it is possible to arrange these species into an array suggestive of multiple pathways for the maturation of fiber mRNA. mRNA transcribed at late times from the L strand between coordinates 15.0 and 11.0 has a single component leader located 200 bases from the main body of the gene from coordinate 16.1 to 15.7. This leader originates from a site very close to the first leader component (16.5-16.6) of the R strand messages and suggests the presence of adjacent L and R strand promoters from which transcription diverges. Taken together, these results emphasize the diversity of splicing patterns and the variety of recombined sequences generated during the synthesis of late Ad2 mRNAs. © 1978.
  • Published In

  • Cell  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 15767383
  • Author List

  • Chow LT; Broker TR
  • Start Page

  • 497
  • End Page

  • 510
  • Volume

  • 15
  • Issue

  • 2