Human T-cell lymphotropic virus type III shares sequence homology with a family of pathogenic lentiviruses

M. A. Gonda, M. J. Braun, J. E. Clements, J. M. Pyper, F. Wong-Staal, R. C. Gallo, R. V. Gilden

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78 Scopus citations


The etiologic agent of the acquired immune deficiency syndrome, human T-cell lymphotropic virus type III (HTLV-III), has recently been shown to morphologically resemble and share sequence homology with visna virus, a pathogenic lentivirus. Molecular hybridization, heteroduplex mapping, and DNA sequence analyses were used to compare HTLV-III to other lentiviruses of domestic animals, including visna, caprine arthritis encephalitis, and equine infectious anemia viruses. Hybridization results showed that a substantial amount of sequence homology exists between each of these viruses and HTLV-III. In addition, a closer relationship was found between visna and caprine arthritis encephalitis viruses than for any of the other lentiviruses studied. These results, along with nucleotide and amino acid sequence comparisons, have been used in a comprehensive effort to derive a systematic relationship for lentiviruses and to provide further evidence for classifying HTLV-III with the Lentivirinae subfamily of retroviruses. This relationship predicts that similarities in biology and disease process can be expected between HTLV-III and other Lentivirinae members.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4007-4011
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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