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Background: Rapid advances in research on antisense transcripts are gradually changing our comprehension of genomic and gene expression aspects of the Herpesviridae. One such herpesvirus is the human cytomegalovirus (HCMV). Although transcription of the HCMV UL87 gene has not been specifically investigated, cDNA clones of UL87 antisense transcripts were found in HCMV cDNA libraries previously. In this study, the transcription of the UL87 antisense strand was investigated in three clinically isolated HCMV strains. Results: First, an 800 nucleotides transcript having an antisense orientation to the UL87 gene was found in a late HCMV cDNA library. Then, the UL87 antisense transcript was confirmed by Rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) and Northern blot in three HCMV clinical strains. Two ORFs were predicted in the antisense transcript. The putative protein of ORF 1 showed a high degree of conservation among HCMV and other CMV strains. Conclusion: An 800nt antisense transcript in the UL87 gene region exists in HCMV clinical strains. © 2011Ma et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Ma, Y., Wang, N., Li, M., Gao, S., Wang, L., Ji, Y., … Ruan, Q. (2011). An antisense transcript in the human cytomegalovirus UL87 gene region. Virology Journal, 8. https://doi.org/10.1186/1743-422X-8-515