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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2004, Issue 1, Pages 16-23
Research article

Genetic Cross-Talk During Head Development in Drosophila

Biology Department, Faculty of Science, University of UAE, PO Box 17551, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates

Received 22 February 2003; Accepted 3 June 2003

Copyright © 2004 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The dorsal head vertex of Drosophila is specified mainly by the orthodenticle (otd) gene. The expression and the function of otd are regulated by the concerted action of many genes including hedgehog (hh) and notch (N). These genes are components of a meshwork of signaling transduction pathways that interact to form the dorsal head capsule of the fruit fly. Loss-of-function Hh mutants lack ocelli; however, loss-of-function N mutants lack a different domain of the dorsal head vertex. This report provides new evidence that the Hh and N pathways are two epistatic signaling cascades that act genetically upstream of the dorsal head capsule specification gene.