A thymus-leukemia (TL)-specific probe, pTL1, has been generated from a TL-coding gene of BALB/c mice. Multiple species of TL mRNA were detected in TL+ cells by Northern blot analysis with pTL1, and different Tla haplotypes could be distinguished on the basis of characteristic patterns of TL mRNA. No TL-related message was found in normal or leukemic TL- cells, including thymocytes from Tlab mice. However, TL mRNA could be detected in TL+ leukemias occurring in Tlab mice. A cDNA library has been made from ASL1 (a TL+ leukemia of A mice [Tlaa]), and pTL1+ clones have been sequenced. At least three structurally distinct TL genes are expressed in ASL1. Sequence comparison of TL genes from three Tla haplotypes indicates that TL genes are highly conserved (greater than 90% homology) and are more distantly related to H-2 genes. Several polyadenylation sites have been found in the 3' untranslated region of TL genes, and differential polyadenylation contributes to the size heterogeneity of TL transcripts. The predicted amino acid sequence of TL products indicates that TL and H-2 are similar in domain structure and disulfide bonds, but differ in glycosylation sites and in cytoplasmic domain sequences.

This content is only available as a PDF.