Evolution of the expression of the Gld gene in the reproductive tract of Drosophila

Nathan M. Schiff, Yue Feng, Jonathan A. Quine, Philip A. Krasney, Douglas R. Cavener

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23 Scopus citations


During the preadult development of Drosophila melanogaster, the GLD (glucose dehydrogenase) gene (Old) is expressed in a variety of tissues, including the immature reproductive tract. At the adult stage the expression of Gld becomes largely restricted to the reproductive tract of males and females. We examined the expression of GLD in the adult reproductive tract of 50 species in the genus Drosophila, as well as in those of a few representative species from four other closely related genera. GLD exhibits considerable organ-specific diversity in the reproductive tract of males and females. Among these species, five male GLD phenotypes and six female GLD phenotypes were found. In contrast, the preadult expression of GLD in representative species from each distinct adult pattern type was determined and found to be highly conserved in both the immature reproductive tract and non-reproductive organs. Moreover, the set of reproductive organs that express GLD during preadult development is equivalent to the sum of the five male and six female adult GLD phenotypes. To initially define the contribution of cis- versus trans-acting, factors responsible for differences in adult GLD expression between two of these species - D. melanogaster and D. pseudoobscura - we transferred the D. pseudoobscura Gld to the genome of D melanogaster and investigated its expression. GLD expression patterns of these transformants displayed characteristics that are unique to both species, suggesting the presence of both cis- and transacting differences between these two species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1029-1049
Number of pages21
JournalMolecular biology and evolution
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1992

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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