Cellular regulation of mammalian sarcoma virus expression: a gene regulation model for oncogenesis

Klaus J. Porzig, Keith C. Robbins, Stuart A. Aaronson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Investigations aimed at defining cellular functions required for expression of transformation by mammalian sarcoma viruses have led to the isolation of a class of revertants that contain biologically active feline sarcoma virus, yet possess in vitro and in vivo properties of normal cells. The block to expression of the transformed state in these cellular revertants was spontaneously reversible at low frequency. Moreover, infection with certain helper viruses reversed the block at very high efficiency. Helper virus complementation was shown not to be a direct effect of helper virus functions expressed in the initially infected revertant cell. Rather, the helper virus acted indirectly by rescuing sarcoma virus and allowing it to infect and transform another cell within the revertant population. Using biochemical and immunologic techniques, it was possible to demonstrate a specific and very marked reduction in transcriptional and translational products of the sarcoma viral genome in the revertant cells. Findings that the reversal of this block was associated with reacquisition of the transformed phenotype, together with other evidence, suggest that reversion results from cellular transcriptional regulation of the integrated sarcoma virus genome. Reversion in this virus transformation system provides a model for oncogenesis resulting from derepression of cellular genes that possess malignant potential.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)875-884
Number of pages10
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1979
Externally publishedYes


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