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Control of the EBV growth transformation programme: the importance of the Bamhi W repeats

Kao, Kuan-Yu (2011)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), a human gammaherpesvirus, possesses a unique set of latent genes whose constitutive expression in B cells leads to cell growth transformation. The initiation of this B-cell growth transformation programme depends on the activation of a viral promoter, Wp, present in each tandemly arrayed BamHI W repeat of the EBV genome. In order to examine the role of the BamHI W region in B cell infection and growth transformation, we constructed a series of recombinant EBVs carrying different numbers of BamHI W repeats and carried out B cell infection experiments. We concluded that EBV requires at least 2 copies of BamHI W repeats to be able to activate transcription and transformation in resting B cells in vitro. At least 5 copies of BamHI W were required for optimal transcription and transformation; while increasing the number beyond 5 copies had no further effect. Experiments to try to rescue the impaired virus indicated that the expression of sufficient levels of EBNA-LP and EBNA2 from Wp are the key determinants of virus-driven B cell transformation. We believe that EBV has evolved to contain multiple copies of BamHI W repeats to ensure high levels of Wp-initiated transcripts immediately post infection.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Rickinson, Alan and Tierney, Rose
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Medical & Dental Sciences
Department:Institute for Cancer Studies
Subjects:RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer)
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:1493
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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