Characterization of a zinc finger gene disrupted by the t(15;17) in acute promyelocytic leukemia

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Science  29 Nov 1991:
Vol. 254, Issue 5036, pp. 1371-1374
DOI: 10.1126/science.1720570


The translocation t(15;17) associated with acute promyelocytic leukemia results in the fusion of the retinoic acid receptor alpha (RARA) gene to the PML gene. Characterization of PML revealed that it is a putative zinc finger protein and potential transcription factor that is commonly expressed, with at least three major transcription products. PML breakpoints cluster in two regions on either side of an alternatively spliced exon. Although leukemic cells with translocations characteristically express only one fusion product, both PML/RARA (on the 15q+ derivative chromosome) and RARA/PML (on the 17q- derivative) are transcribed.

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