Converging strategies in expression of human complex retroviruses

Ilaria Cavallari, Francesca Rende, Donna M. D'Agostino, Vincenzo Ciminale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The discovery of human retroviruses in the early 1980s revealed the existence of viral-encoded non-structural genes that were not evident in previously described animal retroviruses. Based on the absence or presence of these additional genes retroviruses were classified as 'simple' and 'complex', respectively. Expression of most of these extra genes is achieved through the generation of alternatively spliced mRNAs. The present review summarizes the genetic organization and expression strategies of human complex retroviruses and highlights the converging mechanisms controlling their life cycles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1395-1414
Number of pages20
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011


  • HTLV-1
  • Leukemia
  • Rex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology

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