Parvovirus Transcription

  • Barrie J. Carter
  • Catherine A. Laughlin
  • Carol J. Marcus-Sekura
Part of the The Viruses book series (VIRS)


The last review devoted solely to parvovirus transcription (Carter, 1978) was written in December 1976. At that time most of the work on parvovirus transcription had been performed only on AAV. A single predominant 20 S AAV RNA species had been identified in infected cells. A similar KRV RNA had also been identified. On the basis of this knowledge and the limited coding potential of parvovirus genomes together with the known size of parvovirus capsid proteins it was thought that parvoviruses might be monogenic. Clearly, parvoviruses offered a useful system for studying eukaryotic transcription. This encouraged an increasing number of workers to study parvovirus transcription. Such increased interest, together with the application of recently developed and much more sophisticated techniques, rapidly cast doubt upon the apparent monogenicity of parvoviruses. It is now certain that parvoviruses have at least two genes. This change in the picture of parvovirus transcription occurred concurrently with dramatic changes in our view of eukaryotic transcription. This change resulted from two signal discoveries reported in 1977: the use of overlapping reading frames and the noncolinearity of many eukaryotic coding sequences. First, more than one protein may be coded from the same DNA sequence by using different reading frames (Sanger et al., 1977). Second, RNA splicing in eukaryotic cells creates the potential for coding different proteins from single DNA sequences as well as for proteins whose sequences are not colinear with the DNA. RNA splicing certainly does occur, and overlapping reading frames may occur, in parvoviruses.


Minus Strand Sharp Mapping Major Late Promoter Sharp Analysis Penultimate Nucleotide 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barrie J. Carter
    • 1
  • Catherine A. Laughlin
    • 1
  • Carol J. Marcus-Sekura
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Cell Biology and Genetics, National Institute for Arthritis, Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney DiseasesNational Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA

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