Reducing the complexity of the transforming Epstein-Barr virus genome to 64 kilobase pairs
Journal of Virology
Transformation-competent, replication-defective Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) recombinants which are deleted for 18 kbp of DNA encoding the largest EBNA intron and for 58 kbp of DNA between the EBNA1 and LMP1 genes were constructed. These recombinants were made by transfecting three overlapping cosmid-cloned EBV DNA fragments into cells infected with a lytic replication-competent but transformation-defective EBV (P3HR-1 strain) and were identified by clonal transformation of primary B lymphocytes
... ry B lymphocytes into lymphoblastoid cell lines. One-third of the lymphoblastoid cell lines were infected with recombinants which had both deletions and carried the EBNA2 and EBNA3 genes from the transfected EBV DNA and therefore are composed mostly or entirely from the transfected EBV DNA fragments. The deleted DNA is absent from cells infected with most of these recombinants, as demonstrated by Southern blot and sensitive PCR analyses for eight different sites within the deleted regions. Cell growth and EBNA, LMP, and BZLF1 gene expression in lymphoblastoid cell lines infected with these recombinants are similar to those in cells infected with wild-type EBV recombinants. Together with previous data, these experiments reduce the complexity of the EBV DNA necessary for transformation of primary B lymphocytes to 64 kbp. The approach should be useful for molecular genetic analyses of transforming EBV genes or for the insertion of heterologous fragments into transforming EBV genomes.