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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2009 Apr;19(2):200-6. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2009.04.001. Epub 2009 Jun 21.

Fruitless, doublesex and the genetics of social behavior in Drosophila melanogaster.

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  • 1Department of Biology, Swarthmore College, 500 College Aveune, Swarthmore, PA 19081, USA.


Two genes coding for transcription factors, fruitless and doublesex, have been suggested to play important roles in the regulation of sexually dimorphic patterns of social behavior in Drosophila melanogaster. The generalization that fruitless specified the development of the nervous system and doublesex specified non-neural tissues culminated with claims that fruitless was both necessary and sufficient to establish sex-specific patterns of behavior. Several recent articles refute this notion, however, demonstrating that at a minimum, both fruitless and doublesex are involved in establishing sexually dimorphic features of neural circuitry and behavior in fruit flies.

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