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Eur J Cell Biol. 2010 Feb-Mar;89(2-3):273-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ejcb.2009.11.012. Epub 2009 Dec 16.

Cellular analysis of newly identified Hox downstream genes in Drosophila.

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  • 1BIOQUANT Center, Cluster of Excellence - CellNetworks, Heidelberg, University of Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 267, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany.


Hox genes code for conserved homeodomain transcription factors, which act as regional regulators for the specification of segmental identities along the anterior-posterior axis in all animals studied. They execute their function mainly through the activation or repression of their downstream genes. We have recently identified a large number of genes to be directly or indirectly targeted by Hox proteins through gene expression profiling in the model organism Drosophila. However, the cell-specific regulation of these downstream genes and the functional significance of the regulation are largely unknown. We have validated and functionally studied many of the newly identified downstream genes of the Hox proteins Deformed (Dfd) and Abdominal-B (Abd-B), and provide evidence that Hox proteins regulate a diverse group of downstream genes, from transcription factors to realisators with major and minor roles during morphogenesis.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

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