Molecular cloning and biological activity of ecdysis-triggering hormones in Drosophila melanogaster

FEBS Lett. 1999 Dec 10;463(1-2):133-8. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(99)01622-1.


Ecdysis-triggering hormones (ETH) initiate a defined behavioral sequence leading to shedding of the insect cuticle. We have identified eth, a gene encoding peptides with ETH-like structure and biological activity in Drosophila melanogaster. The open reading frame contains three putative peptides based on canonical endopeptidase cleavage and amidation sites. Two of the predicted peptides (DrmETH1 and DrmETH2) prepared by chemical synthesis induce premature eclosion upon injection into pharate adults. The promoter region of the gene contains a direct repeat ecdysteroid response element. Identification of eth in Drosophila provides opportunities for genetic manipulation of endocrine and behavioral events underlying a stereotypic behavior.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / metabolism
  • Insect Hormones / genetics*
  • Insect Hormones / metabolism
  • Insect Hormones / pharmacology
  • Insect Hormones / physiology*
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Manduca / genetics
  • Manduca / physiology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molting / drug effects
  • Molting / genetics*
  • Peptides / genetics
  • Peptides / metabolism
  • Peptides / pharmacology
  • Protein Binding
  • Species Specificity


  • Insect Hormones
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Manduca sexta ecdysis-triggering hormone
  • Peptides
  • ecdysis-triggering hormone, Drosophila

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AC005710
  • GENBANK/AF170922