A genetic screen for genes controlling Ap neuron specification
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
A central theme in developmental biology pertains to how the diversity of different cell types is generated. In addition, it is important to understand how the numbers of each cell type are regulated. In the developing Drosophila ventral nerve cord, only six neurons, the Ap4 neurons, express the neuropeptide gene FMRFamide (FMRFa). This is the result of proper lineage development and a cascade of regulatory information leading to final cell specification. In addition to these cascades, FMRFa expression is critically dependent upon a retrogarade TGFβ/BMP signal from the axonal target. Its restricted expression pattern and the wealth of information regarding its gene regulation, makes FMRFa a useful marker for understanding cell specification, as well as axon path finding and retrograde signaling. To identify novel genes acting at any level of neuronal development, including pattern formation, stem cell competence, cell cycle control, cell specification, axon transport and retrograde signaling, we have conducted a single cell resolution, forward genetic screen utilizing an FMRFa-EGFP reporter as our read-out. A total of 9,781 EMS-mutated chromosomes were screened for perturbations in FMRFa-EGFP expression, and 611 mutants were identified. Complementation tests showed that many of the previously known regulators had been isolated, which confirmed the validity of the screen. However, in addition to these known genes, the majority of mutants represent novel genes with previously undefined functions in neural development.
Drosophila, CNS development, neural cell fate specification, forward genetic screening, FMRFamide
Medical and Health Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-76155OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-76155DiVA: diva2:512770