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Genetics. 1995 Apr;139(4):1679-88.

Cytogenetic and molecular localization of tipE: a gene affecting sodium channels in Drosophila melanogaster.

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State University of New York at Buffalo, Department of Biochemical Pharmacology 14260-1200, USA.


Voltage-sensitive sodium channels play a key role in nerve cells where they are responsible for the increase in sodium permeability during the rising phase of action potentials. In Drosophila melanogaster a subset of temperature-sensitive paralytic mutations affect sodium channel function. One such mutation is temperature-induced paralysis locus E (tipE), which has been shown by electrophysiology and ligand binding studies to reduce sodium channel numbers. Three new gamma-ray-induced tipE alleles associated with either visible deletions in 64AB or a translocation breakpoint within 64B2 provide landmarks for positional cloning of tipE. Beginning with the flanking cloned gene Ras2, a 140-kb walk across the translocation breakpoint was completed. Germline transformation using a 42-kb cosmid clone and successively smaller subclones localized the tipE gene within a 7.4-kb genomic DNA segment. Although this chromosome region is rich in transcripts, only three overlapping mRNAs (5.4, 4.4, and 1.7 kb) lie completely within the smallest rescuing construct. The small sizes of the rescuing construct and transcripts suggest that tipE does not encode a standard sodium channel alpha-subunit with four homologous repeats. Sequencing these transcripts will elucidate the role of the tipE gene product in sodium channel functional regulation.

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