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Molecular basis of Transabdominal--a sexually dimorphic mutant of the bithorax complex of Drosophila

Celniker, Susan E. and Lewis, E. B. (1993) Molecular basis of Transabdominal--a sexually dimorphic mutant of the bithorax complex of Drosophila. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 90 (4). pp. 1566-1570. ISSN 0027-8424.

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Transabdominal (Tab) is a dominant gain-of-function mutation that results in islands of sexually dimorphic abdominal cuticle in the dorsal thorax of the adult fly. This phenotype has complete penetrance and constant expressivity, and we show that it results from ectopic expression of ABD-BII, one of two proteins derived from the Abdominal B (Abd-B) domain of the bithorax complex (BX-C) and one that is normally expressed only in terminal portions of the abdomen. In Tab/+ animals ABD-BII is ectopically expressed in the relevant imaginal ''wing'' disc as three islands of cells whose location on the fate map corresponds to the three islands of transformed cuticle in each half of the adult thorax. Tab is associated with an inseparable inversion bringing sequences in 90E next to sequences in the transcription unit encoding ABD-BII in 89E. That 90E sequences drive ectopic expression of ABD-BII is indicated by our finding that such sequences in a P-element transformant express the reporter gene's product (beta-galactosidase) in the same three islands of wing disc cells. On morphological grounds, the transformed islands in the adult thorax correspond to subsets of muscle attachment cells. Ectopic expression of a homeodomain protein thus creates a unique and invariant pattern of sexual dimorphism.

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Additional Information:Copyright © 1993 by the National Academy of Sciences. Contributed by E. B. Lewis, November 5, 1992. We thank S. Sharma, J. Hardwick, and H. Park for technical assistance; A. Chopna and K. Vijayraghavan for bringing the embryonic expression pattern of the B14 P-element insertion to our attention; and Welcome Bender, Nancy Bonini, Howard Lipshitz, and Joanne Topol for comments on an earlier draft of this paper. This work was supported by grants to E.B.L. from the National Institutes of Health (HD06331 and GM40499) and from the Lucille P. Markey Charitable Trust. The publication costs of this article were defrayed in part by page charge payment. This article must therefore be hereby marked "advertisement" in accordance with 18 U.S.C. §1734 solely to indicate this fact.
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ID Code:1359
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:12 Jan 2006
Last Modified:14 Nov 2014 19:18

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