Control of male sexual behavior and sexual orientation in Drosophila by the fruitless gene

Lisa C. Ryner, Stephen F. Goodwin, Diego H. Castrillon, Anuranjan Anand, Adriana Villella, Bruce S. Baker, Jeffrey C. Hall, Barbara J. Taylor, Steven A. Wasserman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

356 Scopus citations

Abstract

Sexual orientation and courtship behavior in Drosophila are regulated by fruitless (fru), the first gene in a branch of the sex-determination hierarchy functioning specifically in the central nervous system (CNS). The phenotypes of new fru mutants encompass nearly all aspects of male sexual behavior. Alternative splicing of fru transcripts produces sex-specific proteins belonging to the BTB-ZF family of transcriptional regulators. The sex-specific fru products are produced in only about 500 of the 105 neurons that comprise the CNS. The properties of neurons expressing these fru products suggest that fru specifies the fates or activities of neurons that carry out higher order control functions to elicit and coordinate the activities comprising male courtship behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1079-1089
Number of pages11
JournalCell
Volume87
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 13 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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