A transforming function of the BARF1 gene encoded by Epstein-Barr virus

EMBO J. 1989 Oct;8(10):2897-903. doi: 10.1002/j.1460-2075.1989.tb08438.x.


We report a new rodent cell-transforming gene, presumably involved in viral replication, encoded by Epstein-Barr virus. We previously showed that the corresponding open reading frame BARF1 is transcribed before the onset of viral DNA synthesis, and translated into a 33 kd early polypeptide (p33). Here we show that recombinant plasmids containing the BARF1 induce morphological change, anchorage-independent growth and tumorigenic transformation of established mouse fibroblast lines. The BARF1-transformed cells and the tumour tissues isolated from new-born rats after injection of such transformed cell both express p33. Transforming activity was obtained from either the genomic fragment or the cDNA sequence.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Division
  • Cell Line, Transformed
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic*
  • Cell Transformation, Viral*
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes, Viral / physiology*
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / genetics*
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / physiology
  • Humans
  • Immunoblotting
  • Kinetics
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Oncogenes*
  • Rats
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Transfection
  • Viral Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Viral Proteins / genetics*
  • Virus Replication


  • Viral Proteins