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Development of the Drosophila retina, a neurocrystalline lattice

Ready, Donald F. and Hanson, Thomas E. and Benzer, Seymour (1976) Development of the Drosophila retina, a neurocrystalline lattice. Developmental Biology, 53 (2). pp. 217-240. ISSN 0012-1606. doi:10.1016/0012-1606(76)90225-6.

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Pattern formation in the Drosophila retina proceeds by the recruitment of cells, along a morphogenetic front, into a lattice. At the advancing front, marked by a dorso-ventral furrow in the eye imaginal disc, cells are organized into ommatidial precursors, each containing cells destined to become photoreceptors 2, 3, 4, 5, and 8. Behind the front, a mitotic wave produces photoreceptors 1, 6, and 7, plus the remaining cells needed to complete the ommatidia. During the third larval instar, the front sweeps anteriorly across the eye disc, leaving a highly ordered pattern in its wake. Preceding the dorso-ventral furrow is a groove that bisects the eye disc into dorsal and ventral halves and presumably plays a role in establishing the equatorial symmetry line. Cell lineage plays little role in pattern formation in the eye. Genetic mosaics show that the cells of each ommatidium are not derived from a single mother cell; the cells appear to be recruited at random at the morphogenetic front. Similarly, the mirror symmetry above and below the equator is not established by a clonal mechanism; a single clone can contribute cells to ommatidia on both sides of the equator.

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Additional Information:© 1976 Academic Press. Accepted 21 June 1976. This research was supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation, PCM 73–01972.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSFPCM 73-01972
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190227-140300469
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Official Citation:Donald F. Ready, Thomas E. Hanson, Seymour Benzer, Development of the Drosophila retina, a neurocrystalline lattice, Developmental Biology, Volume 53, Issue 2, 1976, Pages 217-240, ISSN 0012-1606, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:93309
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:27 Feb 2019 22:21
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 16:56

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