Avian erythroblastosis virus (AEV) induces both erythroblastosis and fibrosarcoma in chickens1. The viral oncogene responsible for these diseases, erb, is divided into two regions, erb-A and erb-B, although recent evidence suggests that it is primarily the erb-B gene product that is responsible for the transforming activity2–5. The erb-B gene product has been reported previously to be a membrane glycoprotein of 68,000 molecular weight (MW), gp68erb-B (refs 6, 7). However, we show here that gp68erb-B is an in tracei lu lar precursor which is modified further to a 74,000 MW protein, gp74erb-B. By the criteria of resistance to digestion with endoglycosidase H, subcellular fractionation and inhibition of biosynthesis by the ionophore monensin, gp74erb-B appears to be located at the cell surface. Recently, a comparison of the erb-B sequence8 with that of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor has shown that these two genes are highly homologous9, and that erb-B appears to represent a truncated form of this growth factor. In light of these data the identification of gp74erb-B at the plasma membrane suggests that this may be the functionally important form of the erb-B gene product.
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Hayman, M., Beug, H. Identification of a form of the avian erythroblastosis virus erb-B gene product at the cell surface. Nature 309, 460–462 (1984). https://doi.org/10.1038/309460a0
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