A Caltech Library Service

Graded requirement for the zygotic terminal gene, tailless, in the brain and tail region of the Drosophila embryo

Strecker, Teresa R. and Merriam, John R. and Lengyel, Judith A. (1988) Graded requirement for the zygotic terminal gene, tailless, in the brain and tail region of the Drosophila embryo. Development, 102 (4). pp. 721-734. ISSN 0950-1991.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


We have used hypomorphic and null tailless (tll) alleles to carry out a detailed analysis of the effects of the lack of tll gene activity on anterior and posterior regions of the embryo. The arrangement of tll alleles into a continuous series clarifies the relationship between the anterior and posterior functions of the tll gene and indicates that there is a graded sensitivity of anterior and posterior structures to a decrease in tll gene activity. With the deletion of both anterior and posterior pattern domains in tll null embryos, there is a poleward expansion of the remaining pattern. Using anti-horseradish peroxidase staining, we show that the formation of the embryonic brain requires tll. A phenotypic and genetic study of other pattern mutants places the tll gene within the hierarchy of maternal and zygotic genes required for the formation of the normal body pattern. Analysis of mutants doubly deficient in tll and maternal terminal genes is consistent with the idea that these genes act together in a common pathway to establish the domains at opposite ends of the embryo. We propose that tll establishes anterior and posterior subdomains (acron and tail regions, respectively) within the larger pattern regions affected by the maternal terminal genes.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Additional Information:© 1988 The Company of Biologists Limited. Accepted 29 December 1987. We wish to thank Jose Campos-Ortega and Volker Hartenstein for helpful discussions regarding the central nervous system, and Kathryn Anderson and Howard Lipshitz for critically reading the manuscript. We also thank Trudi Schiipbach, Eric Wieschaus, and Gary Struhl for sending us fly strains. This research was supported by NSF Grant DCB 84-03539 to J.A.L. and J.R.M., and NIH Grant GM 38432 to J.R.M. T.R.S. was supported by USPHS National Service Award GM7104 and a predoctoral fellowship from the American Association of University Women.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSFDCB 84-03539
NIHGM 38432
USPHS National Research Service AwardGM7104
American Association of University WomenUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:pattern formation; segmentation, acron. Drosophila; tailless; terminal gene; brain, gene activity; mutant
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20120531-132231662
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:31750
Deposited By: Jason Perez
Deposited On:31 May 2012 21:21
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 03:54

Repository Staff Only: item control page