WENDY MICHELLE MARS, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


The goal of the present work was to identify and characterize gene sequences that are preferentially expressed in CML in an effort to better understand the molecular basis of the disease. As high abundance mRNAs generally encode proteins that are phenotypically characteristic of cells, positive-negative screening of a CML cDNA library was used to identify cDNA clones containing sequences preferentially transcribed in CML. One cDNA sequence that fulfilled this criterion, C-A3, has been characterized in some detail. It represents a small mRNA ((TURN)496 nucleotides) that is highly abundant ((TURN)2% of the poly(A('+))RNA) in cells from the chronic phase of CML. In situ hybridization to whole cells indicates the principal leukocytes that express C-A3 sequences are eosinophils, basophils and immature myelocytes. Surprisingly, CML patients with high numbers of myeloblasts do not have an abundance of C-A3 transcripts, although transcript levels remain elevated in patients with lymphoblasts. In AML, high transcript levels are only found sporadically and occasionally different sized transcripts can be detected. Sequences from the 3' end of the C-A3 message are present in 2-5 copies per haploid genome. The 3' end of C-A3 localizes to bands 8q21.1 and 8q23 by in situ chromosomal hybridization. This is a region that is often involved in hematopoietic malignancies. Restriction digests of human genomic DNA show a correlation between the presence of a 2.3 kb Hind III fragment and certain types of leukemia. All of the leukemic DNAs tested had this fragment. In comparison, only one of five normal DNAs had a band this size. Analysis of the nucleotide sequence indicates that C-A3 probably encodes a small, hydrophobic peptide which may be part of a larger protein.

Subject Area

Molecular biology

Recommended Citation

MARS, WENDY MICHELLE, "GENE EXPRESSION IN CHRONIC MYELOGENOUS LEUKEMIA" (1986). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI8616965.