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Little is known about the mechanisms that generate neuronal specificity during development. Whereas the grasshopper embryo has been an ideal system for a cellular analysis of neuronal development, the Drosophila embryo has obvious attributes for a molecular genetic analysis. Here we show that the early Drosophila embryo is a miniature replica of the(More)
We have isolated the Drosophila homolog of the vertebrate islet-1 and islet-2 genes, two members of the LIM homeodomain family implicated in the transcriptional control of motor neuronal differentiation. Similar to vertebrates, Drosophila islet is expressed in a discrete subset of embryonic motor neurons and interneurons that includes the dopaminergic and(More)
Drosophila larval crawling is a simple behavior that allows us to dissect the functions of specific neurons in the intact animal and explore the roles of genes in the specification of those neurons. By inhibiting subsets of neurons in the PNS, we have found that two classes of multidendritic neurons play a major role in larval crawling. The bipolar(More)
The most commonly used enzymatic reporter molecule, Escherichia coli beta-galactosidase (beta-gal; beta-D-galactoside galactohydrolase, EC 3.2.1.23), fails to readily diffuse into axons; consequently, the morphologies of beta-gal-labeled neurons cannot directly be determined. For analysis of neuronal pathfinding and synaptic connectivity, this information(More)
Different classes of vertebrate motor neuron that innervate distinct muscle targets express unique combinations of LIM-homeodomain transcription factors, suggesting that a combinatorial code of LIM-homeodomain proteins may underlie the control of motor-neuron pathway selection. Studies of LIM-homeodomain genes in mouse, Drosophila melanogaster and(More)
During development, neurons are capable of selecting specific pathways that lead them to their appropriate target areas. A variety of molecular mechanisms are thought to be involved in pathway recognition, including cell adhesion, repulsion and chemotropism. However, apart from a few genes whose involvement has been shown genetically, the mechanisms(More)
Mutations in the single-minded (sim) gene of Drosophila result in the loss of the precursor cells giving rise to the midline cells of the embryonic central nervous system. We have examined the structure of the sim product by sequencing a sim cDNA clone, and have also determined the subcellular localization of the protein and its developmental expression by(More)
We describe the direct and cell-specific regulation of the Drosophila FMRFa neuropeptide gene by Apterous, a LIM homeodomain transcription factor. dFMRFa and Apterous are expressed in partially overlapping subsets of neurons, including two of the seventeen dFMRFa cell types, the Tv neuroendocrine cells and the SP2 interneurons. Apterous contributes to the(More)
The developing wing disc of Drosophila is divided into distinct lineage-restricted compartments along both the anterior/posterior (A/P) and dorsal/ventral (D/V) axes. At compartment boundaries, morphogenic signals pattern the disc epithelium and direct appropriate outgrowth and differentiation of adult wing structures. The mechanisms by which affinity(More)
In nervous systems with bilateral symmetry, many neurons project axons across the midline to the opposite side. In each segment of the Drosophila embryonic nervous system, axons that display this projection pattern choose one of two distinct tracts: the anterior or posterior commissure. Commissure choice is controlled by Derailed, an atypical receptor(More)