Ebeling, Angelika; Keil, Günther M.; Knust, Elisabeth; Koszinowski, Ulrich H.
Molecular cloning and physical mapping of murine cytomegalovirus DNA.
In: Journal of Virology, Vol. 47: pp. 421-433
Murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) Smith strain DNA is cleaved by restriction endonuclease HindIII into 16 fragments, ranging in size from 0.64 to 22.25 megadaltons. Of the 16 HindIII fragments, 15 were cloned in plasmid pACYC177 in Escherichia coli HB101 (recA). The recombinant plasmid clones were characterized by cleavage with the enzymes XbaI and EcoRI. In addition, fragments generated by double digestion of cloned fragments with HindIII and XbaI were inserted into the plasmid vector pACYC184. The results obtained after hybridization of 32P-labeled cloned fragments to Southern blots of MCMV DNA cleaved with HindIII, XbaI, EcoRI, BamHI, ApaI, ClaI, EcoRV, or KpnI allowed us to construct complete physical maps of the viral DNA for the restriction endonucleases HindIII, XbaI, and EcoRI. On the basis of the cloning and mapping experiments, it was calculated that the MCMV genome spans about 235 kilobase pairs, corresponding to a molecular weight of 155,000,000. All fragments were found to be present in equimolar concentrations, and no cross-hybridization between any of the fragments was seen. We conclude that the MCMV DNA molecule consists of a long unique sequence without large terminal or internal repeat regions. Thus, the structural organization of the MCMV genome is fundamentally different from that of the human cytomegalovirus or herpes simplex virus genome.