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Trends Genet. 2005 Jun;21(6):346-55.

The Drosophila shell game: patterning genes and morphological change.

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Department of Genome Sciences, University of Washington, Box 357730, Seattle, WA 98195-7730, USA.


What are the mechanisms that convert cell-fate information into shape changes and movements, thus creating the biological forms that comprise tissues and organs? Tubulogenesis of the Drosophila dorsal eggshell structures provides an excellent system for studying the link between patterning and morphogenesis. Elegant genetic and molecular analyses from over a decade provide a strong foundation for understanding the combinatorial signaling events that specify dorsal anterior cell fates within the follicular epithelium overlying the oocyte. Recent studies reveal the morphogenetic events that alter that flat epithelial sheet into two tubes; these tubes form the mold for synthesizing the dorsal appendages--eggshell structures that facilitate respiration in the developing embryo. This review summarizes the mutant analyses that give insight into these patterning and morphogenetic processes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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