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Dev Genes Evol. 1998 Oct;208(8):440-6.

Specific interactions between vestigial and scalloped are required to promote wing tissue proliferation in Drosophila melanogaster.

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  • 1Institut Jacques Monod, L.G.Q.M., 2, Place Jussieu, Tour 43, F-75251 Paris cedex 05, France.


The two genes vestigial (vg) and scalloped (sd) are required for wing development in Drosophila melanogaster. They present similar patterns of expression in second and third instar wing discs and similar wing mutant phenotypes. vg encodes a nuclear protein without any recognized nucleic acid-binding motif. Sd is a transcription factor homologous to the human TEF-1 factor whose promoter activity depends on cell-specific cofactors. We postulate that Vg could be a cofactor of Sd in the wing morphogenetic process and that, together, they could constitute a functional transcription complex. We investigated genetic interactions between the two genes. We show here that vg and sd co-operate in vivo in a manner dependent on the structure of the Vg protein. We ectopically expressed vg in the patch (ptc) domains. We show evidence that wing-like outgrowths induced by ectopic expression of vg are severely reduced in vg or sd mutant backgrounds. Accordingly, we demonstrate that ptc-GAL4-driven expression of vg induces both expressions of the endogenous vg and sd genes and that the two Vg and Sd proteins have to be produced together to promote wing proliferation. Furthermore, we show an interaction between the two proteins by double hybrid experiments in yeast. Our results therefore support the hypothesis that Sd and Vg directly interact in vivo to form a complex regulating the proliferation of wing tissue.

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