A liver-specific enhancer in the core promoter region of human hepatitis B virus

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Science  03 Nov 1989:
Vol. 246, Issue 4930, pp. 658-661
DOI: 10.1126/science.2554495


An 88-base pair fragment in the core promoter of the human hepatitis B virus (HBV) contains a functional promoter and a strong liver-specific enhancer. This enhancer functions in human hepatoma cells, where it is much more active than the previously described HBV enhancer in stimulating expression of the linked bacterial chloramphenicol acetyltransferase gene expressed from heterologous promoters. Studies of the role of this enhancer-promoter in HBV may help to clarify mechanisms of gene expression in cells infected with HBV and the role of the virus in the pathogenesis of hepatitis and hepatocellular carcinoma.

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