Many of the transcription factors and target genes that pattern the developing adult remain unknown. In the present study, we find that an ortholog of the poorly understood transcription factor, glucose transporter (GLUT4) enhancer factor (Glut4EF, GEF) [also known as the Huntington's disease gene regulatory region-binding protein (HDBP) 1], plays a critical role in specifying normal wing positioning in adult Drosophila. Glut4EF proteins are zinc-finger transcription factors named for their ability to regulate expression of GLUT4 but nothing is known of Glut4EF's in vivo physiological functions. Here, we identify a family of Glut4EF proteins that are well conserved from Drosophila to humans and find that mutations in Drosophila Glut4EF underlie the wing-positioning defects seen in stretch mutants. In addition, our results indicate that previously uncharacterized mutations in Glut4EF are present in at least 11 publicly available fly lines and on the widely used TM3 balancer chromosome. These results indicate that previous observations utilizing these common stocks may be complicated by the presence of Glut4EF mutations. For example, our results indicate that Glut4EF mutations are also present on the same chromosome as two gain-of-function mutations of the homeobox transcription factor Antennapedia (Antp) and underlie defects previously attributed to Antp. In fact, our results support a role for Glut4EF in the modulation of morphogenetic processes mediated by Antp, further highlighting the importance of Glut4EF transcription factors in patterning and morphogenesis.
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