Graded dorsal and differential gene regulation in the Drosophila embryo. Academic Article uri icon


  • A gradient of Dorsal activity patterns the dorsoventral (DV) axis of the early Drosophila melanogaster embryo by controlling the expression of genes that delineate presumptive mesoderm, neuroectoderm, and dorsal ectoderm. The availability of the Drosophila melanogaster genome sequence has accelerated the study of embryonic DV patterning, enabling the use of systems-level approaches. As a result, our understanding of Dorsal-dependent gene regulation has expanded to encompass a collection of more than 50 genes and 30 cis-regulatory sequences. This information, which has been integrated into a spatiotemporal atlas of gene regulatory interactions, comprises one of the best-understood networks controlling any developmental process to date. In this article, we focus on how Dorsal controls differential gene expression and how recent studies have expanded our understanding of Drosophila embryonic development from the cis-regulatory level to that controlling morphogenesis of the embryo.

published proceedings

  • Cold Spring Harb Perspect Biol

author list (cited authors)

  • Reeves, G. T., & Stathopoulos, A.

citation count

  • 85

complete list of authors

  • Reeves, Gregory T||Stathopoulos, Angelike

publication date

  • October 2009