Homologous recombination of adenovirus DNA in mammalian cells: enhanced recombination following UV-irradiation of the virus
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We have used adenovirus as a molecular probe to examine the recombination of viral DNA following infection of mammalian cells. The technique gives a quantitative measure of homologous recombination between adenovirus type 2 (Ad2) and Ad5PyMTR3. Ad5PyMTR3 is an insertion mutant of Ad5 containing polyoma virus (Py) DNA inserted into a deleted E1 region of the Ad5 genome. Cells were coinfected with Ad2 and Ad5PyMTR3 and at an appropriate time after infection, viral DNA was extracted from the infected cells, digested with restriction endonuclease and electrophoresed through an agarose gel. Although Ad2 and Ad5 have more than 99% DNA homology, they differ sufficiently in their restriction endonuclease patterns, such that recombinant viral DNA molecules containing the Py insert could be detected and quantified by Southern blotting and hybridization to a radioactive Py DNA probe. Using this method we are able to detect and quantitate recombinant viral DNA molecules containing the Py insert which are present at frequencies down to at least 1 in 100. Recombination was detected in Chinese hamster ovary cells, monkey kidney cells, human HeLa cells, normal human fibroblasts and SV40 transformed human fibroblasts. In experiments using HeLa cells, the frequency of recombination between the Py insert on Ad5PyMTR3 and a number of unique restriction enzyme sites on Ad2 increased with the distance from the Py insert to the restriction site. Also in HeLa cells, recombination increased with increasing amounts of viral DNA synthesis and with increasing UV dose to the virus. UV-irradiation of both coinfecting viruses with 1500 J/m2 resulted in a more than 100-fold reduction in the amount of viral DNA synthesized and about a 3-fold increase in the frequency of recombination.
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