Recognition of Virus Genomes in Cells by Molecular Hybridization

  • Harald zur Hausen
  • Heinrich Schulte-Holthausen
  • Hans Wolf
Part of the NATO Advanced Study Institutes Series book series (NSSA, volume 5)


The application of molecular hybridization techniques to the detection of latent viruses, here in particular of potential human tumor viruses, appears to be a promising approach for several reasons:
  1. 1.

    Virus-specific nucleic acids can be detected in viral genome-harboring cells which do not synthesize viral particles.

  2. 2.

    The available techniques are sensitive enough to discover one genome equivalent per cell or even less.

  3. 3.

    Transcription of viral nucleic acids within tumor cells provides information on the genetic activity of the persisting genome.

  4. 4.

    In situ hybridizations permit the localization of viral genomes within tumor cells.

  5. 5.

    Tumors can be screened without applying biological procedures like virus isolation attempts in tissue culture cells or animals. These isolation procedures have been unsuccessfully tried with human materials since several decades.



Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma Raji Cell Infectious Mononucleosis Nucleic Acid Hybridization Molecular Hybridization 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • Harald zur Hausen
    • 1
  • Heinrich Schulte-Holthausen
    • 1
  • Hans Wolf
  1. 1.Institut für klinische VirologieUniversität Erlangen-NürnbergGermany

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