BALB/3T3 cells transformed by the Kirsten sarcoma virus (nonvirus producer BALB/3T3 cells) and mutant cell lines derived therefrom by treatment with bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) were analyzed for expression of virus-specific RNA using single-stranded DNA transcripts of Rauscher leukemia virus (RLV), a virus activated in one of the cell lines (58-2T), and Ki-SV-specific DNA transcript; the latter transcript after removal of all sequences cross-reactive with RLV RNA. The Rauscher virus DNA detected multiple copies of viral RNA in virus-producing cells (∼2.5 x 103/cell) whether infected with RLV or activated to produce virus with BrdU. Nonproducer (NP) cells and normal BALB cells showed small numbers of RNA genomes (70–250/cell) and only partial saturation of the transcript. The intracellular RNA sedimented at 35S (main peak) with a variable minor peak at 20S with the exception of one mutant cell, M-43-2 (main peak at 26–27S). The 58-2T transcript reacted preferentially in NP cells and their derivatives with biphasic kinetics suggesting the possibility of sequences specific for the original transforming virus. The size of Ki-SV specific sequences were 30S in mutant cells whether or not complete virus was being produced and independent of in vivo transplantability.

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