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Xenotropic Murine Leukemia Virus-Related Virus (XMRV) is a novel human gammaretrovirus discovered in association with human prostate tumors. XMRV was first identified in prostate stromal cells surrounding the tumors of patients carrying a mutation in the HPC1 gene locus.
To determine the tropism of XMRV in cell culture, we tested the ability of XMRV to spread and replicate in various prostate and non-prostate cell lines.
We found that:
• While expression of XMRV viral proteins and spread of infectious virus were minimal in a variety of cell lines,
• XMRV displayed robust expression and infection in LNCaP prostate tumor cells.
The transcriptional activity of the XMRV Long Terminal Repeat (LTR) was found to be higher than the Moloney Murine Leukemia virus (MoMLV) LTR in both LNCaP and WPMY-1 (SV40-transformed prostate stromal cells).
The U3 promoter of XMRV and a glucocorticoid response element (GRE) within the U3 were required for the transcriptional activity in LNCaP cells.
Co-expression of the androgen receptor (AR) and stimulation with dihydrotestosterone (DHT) stimulated XMRV-LTR dependent transcription in 293T cells and the GRE was required for this activity.
These data suggest that XMRV may replicate more efficiently in LNCaP cells in part due to the transcriptional environment in LNCaP cells.
Source: Journal of Virology, Dec 16, 2009. PMID: 20015990, by Rodriguez JJ, Goff SP. Columbia University, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, New York, NY. [E-mail: email@example.com]