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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Psi- vectors: murine leukemia virus-based self-inactivating and self-activating retroviral vectors.

We have developed murine leukemia virus (MLV)-based self-inactivating and self-activating vectors to show that the previously demonstrated high-frequency direct repeat deletions are not unique to spleen necrosis virus (SNV) or the neomycin drug resistance gene. Retroviral vectors pKD-HTTK and pKD-HTpTK containing direct repeats composed of segments of the herpes simplex virus type 1 thymidine kinase (HTK) gene were constructed; in pKD-HTpTK, the direct repeat flanked the MLV packaging signal. The generation of hypoxanthine-aminopterin-thymidine-resistant colonies after one cycle of retroviral replication demonstrated functional reconstitution of the HTK gene. Quantitative Southern analysis indicated that direct repeat deletions occurred in 57 and 91% of the KD-HTTK and KD-HTpTK proviruses, respectively. These results demonstrate that (i) deletion of direct repeats occurs at similar high frequencies in SNV and MLV vectors, (ii) MLV psi can be efficiently deleted by using direct repeats, (iii) suicide genes can be functionally reconstituted during reverse transcription, and (iv) the psi region may be a hot spot for reverse transcriptase template switching events.[1]


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