Exon involvement in the regulation of MuSVts110 RNA splicing

Deborah Ann Sterner, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


MuSVts110 is a conditionally defective mutant of Moloney murine sarcoma virus which undergoes a novel tmperature-dependent splice event at growth temperatures of 33$\sp\circ$C or lower. Relative to wild-type MuSV-124, MuSVts110 contains a 1487 base deletion spanning from the 3$\sp\prime$ end of the p30 gag coding region to just downstream of the first v-mos initiation codon. As a result, the gag and mos genes are fused out of frame and no v-mos protein is expressed. However, upon a shift to 33$\sp\circ$C or lower, a splice event occurs which removes 431 bases, realigns the gag and mos genes, and allows read-through translation of a P85gag-mos transforming protein. Interestingly, while the cryptic splice sites utilized in MuSVts110 are present and unaltered in MuSV-124, they are never used. Due to the 1487 base deletion, the MuSV-124 intron was reduced from 1919 to 431 bases suggesting that intron size might be involved in the activation of these cryptic splice sites in MuSVts110. Since the splicing phenotype of the MuSVts110 equivalent (TS32 DNA) which contains the identical 1487 base deletion introduced into otherwise wild-type MuSV-124 DNA, was indistinguishable from authentic MuSVts110, it was concluded that this deletion alone is responsible for activation of the cryptic splice sites used in MuSVts110. These results also confirmed that thermodependent splicing is an intrinsic property of the viral RNA and not due to some cellular defect. Furthermore, analysis of gag gene deletion and frameshift MuSVts110 mutants demonstrated that viral gag gene proteins do not play a role in regulation of MuSVts110 splicing. Instead, cis-acting viral sequences appear to mediate regulation of the splice event. Our initial observation that truncation of the MuSVts110 transcript, leaving only residual amounts of the flanking exon sequences, completely abolished splicing activity argued that exon sequences might participate in the regulation of the splice event. Analysis of exon sequence involvement has also identified cis-acting sequences important in the thermodependence of the splice event. Data suggest that regulation of the MuSVts110 splice event involves multiple interactions between specific intron and exon sequences and spliceosome components which together limit splicing activity to temperatures of 33$\sp\circ$C or lower while simultaneously restricting splicing to a maximum of 50% efficiency. (Abstract shortened with permission of author.)

Subject Area

Molecular biology

Recommended Citation

Sterner, Deborah Ann, "Exon involvement in the regulation of MuSVts110 RNA splicing" (1990). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI9033105.