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Seven Genes of the Enhancer of Split Complex of Drosophila Melanogaster Encode Helix-Loop-Helix Proteins

The Genetics Society of America
Publication Date
  • Investigations
  • Biology


Enhancer of split [E(spl)] is one of the neurogenic loci of Drosophila and, as such, is required for normal segregation of neural and epidermal cell progenitors. Genetic observations indicate that the E(spl) locus is in fact a gene complex comprising a cluster of related genes and that other genes of the region are also required for normal early neurogenesis. Three of the genes of the complex were known to encode helix-loop-helix (HLH) proteins and to be transcribed in nearly identical patterns. Here, we show that four other genes in the vicinity also encode HLH proteins and, during neuroblast segregation, three of them are expressed in the same pattern. We show by germ-line transformation that these three genes are also necessary to allow epidermal development of the neuroectodermal cells.

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