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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1990 Mar;87(6):2072-6.

Resistance to juvenile hormone and an insect growth regulator in Drosophila is associated with an altered cytosolic juvenile hormone-binding protein.

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  • 1Department of Zoology, University of Vermont, Burlington 05405.


The Met mutant of Drosophila melanogaster is highly resistant to juvenile hormone III (JH III) or its chemical analog, methoprene, an insect growth regulator. Five major mechanisms of insecticide resistance were examined in Met and susceptible Met+ flies. These two strains showed only minor differences when penetration, excretion, tissue sequestration, or metabolism of [3H]JH III was measured. In contrast, when we examined JH III binding by a cytosolic binding protein from a JH target tissue, Met strains had a 10-fold lower binding affinity than did Met+ strains. Studies using deficiency-bearing chromosomes provide strong evidence that the Met locus controls the binding protein characteristics and may encode the protein. These studies indicate that resistance in Met flies results from reduced binding affinity of a cytosolic binding protein for JH III.

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