|Characterization of rous sarcoma virus-related sequences in the Japanese quail
|Chambers, J. A.
Taylor, J. M.
|Journal of Virology
We detected sequences related to the avian retrovirus Rous sarcoma virus within the genome of the Japanese quail, a species previously considered to be free of endogenous avian leukosis virus elements. Using low-stringency conditions of hybridization, we screened a quail genomic library for clones containing retrovirus-related information. Of five clones so selected, one, λQ48, contained sequence information related to the gag, pol, and env genes of Rous sarcoma virus arranged in a contiguous fashion and spanning a distance of approximately 5.8 kilobases. This organization is consistent with the presence of an endogenous retroviral element within the Japanese quail genome. Use of this element as a high-stringency probe on Southern blots of genomic digests of several quail DNA demonstrated hybridization to a series of high-molecular-weight bands. By slot hybridization to quail DNA with a cloned probe, it was deduced that there were approximately 300 copies per diploid cell. In addition, the quail element also hybridized at low stringency to the DNA of the White Leghorn chicken and at high stringency to the DNAs of several species of jungle fowl and both true and ruffed pheasants. Limited nucleotide sequencing analysis of λQ48 revealed homologies of 65, 52, and 46% compared with the sequence of Rous sarcoma virus strain Prague C for the endonuclease domain of pol, the pol-env junction, and the 3'-terminal region of env, respectively. Comparisons at the amino acid level were also significant, thus confirming the retrovirus relatedness of the cloned quail element.
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