Transcriptional regulation of Drosophila behavior-related genes using an in vivo construction/deletion strategy
Abstract: Behavioral genes often comprise proteins that require subtle and responsive transcriptional regulation; their regulation is involved in shaping the signals required for communication within the body and without. The primary focus of this study will be on the transcriptional regulation of multiple behavioral genes using a strategy of serial deletion (and replacement) in the transcriptional control regions of two behavioral genes. The two cases to be investigated will demonstrate the generalizability of our approach. One regulatory region will be the drosophila ether-a-go-go related gene (erg), one of the causative genes for long QT syndrome; the other, fruitless (fru), is a master regulator of male courtship behavior. Through serial deletions of their respective promoter regions using a fluorescent reporter system to identify deletions. In Drosophila melanogaster, erg, the mutant, is temperature sensitive. Loss of erg expression can be assayed as a function of promoter length, which when lost will induce paralysis. A heat assay will be used to test phenotypic expression of the dERG gene in transgenic fly progeny. For loss of fru, the behavioral phenotype will be the loss of courtship which will be seen as increasing sterility.
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