Gene expression patternNerfin-1 and -2, novel Drosophila Zn-finger transcription factor genes expressed in the developing nervous system
Review articleOpen access

AbstractTo gain insight into the regulatory networks controlling Drosophila neural-identity decisions, we have identified new neuronal precursor genes by performing an in situ hybridization screen of differentially selected embryonic head cDNAs. Here, we describe the molecular characteristics and expression profile of nerfin-1, a novel pan-neural precursor gene. This paper also documents the embryonic expression of another structurally related gene, nerfin-2. During early CNS development, nerfin-1 gene expression is activated in neuroblasts (NBs) prior to lineage formation. However, after early sublineage development, nerfin-1 expression shifts from NBs to ganglion mother cells (GMCs) but is not expressed in neurons or glia. Differing from nerfin-1, nerfin-2 is expressed only in a subset of brain neurons. Possessing a conserved putative DNA-binding domain, the predicted Nerfin-1 and -2 proteins belong to a subfamily of Zn-finger transcription factors with cognates identified in nematode, mouse and man.

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