Class II polytropic murine leukemia viruses (MuLVs) of AKR/J mice: possible role in the generation of class I oncogenic polytropic MuLVs.

Journal of virology

PubMedID: 3033319

Evans LH, Malik FG. Class II polytropic murine leukemia viruses (MuLVs) of AKR/J mice: possible role in the generation of class I oncogenic polytropic MuLVs. J Virol. 1987;61(6):1882-92.
We examined the frequency of occurrence of polytropic murine leukemia viruses (MuLVs) in the spleens and thymuses of preleukemic AKR/J mice from 1 week to 6 months of age and analyzed the genomic RNAs of several polytropic isolates by RNase T1 oligonucleotide fingerprinting. Polytropic MuLVs were first detected in the spleens of 3-week-old mice and preceded the appearance of polytropic MuLVs in the thymus by over 1 month. At 4 months of age and older, nearly all mice expressed polytropic MuLVs in both organs. In contrast to previous studies which have identified class I polytropic MuLVs in AKR/J mice, fingerprint analysis of polytropic MuLVs from both young (3- to 4-week-old) and older (5- to 6-month-old) preleukemic mice indicated that a large proportion of viruses at both ages were class II polytropic MuLVs. All polytropic viruses (five isolates) analyzed from 3- to 4-week-old mice were recovered from spleen cells and were class II polytropic MuLVs. In older preleukemic mice, five of seven isolates were class II polytropic MuLVs and two were class I polytropic viruses. Class I and class II polytropic MuLVs were recovered from both the spleens and thymuses of older preleukemic mice. A detailed comparison of the class I and class II polytropic MuLVs from 5- to 6-month-old mice revealed that the nonecotropic gp70 sequences of most of the class I and class II MuLVs were identical, consistent with a common origin for these sequences. In contrast, the nonecotropic p15E sequences of class I MuLVs were clearly derived from different endogenous sequences than the nonecotropic p15E sequences of the class II MuLVs. The in vitro host ranges of class I and class II polytropic viruses were clearly distinguishable. Examination of the in vitro host range of several isolates suggested that the predominant polytropic viruses initially identified in the thymus (2 to 3 months of age) were class II polytropic viruses. The order of appearance of the class I and class II polytropic MuLVs and the identity of the gp70 oligonucleotides of these MuLVs suggested a model for the stepwise generation of class I polytropic MuLVs involving a class II polytropic MuLV intermediate.