The bric à brac locus consists of two paralogous genes encoding BTB/POZ domain proteins and acts as a homeotic and morphogenetic regulator of imaginal development in Drosophila

Development. 2002 May;129(10):2419-33.


The bric à brac (bab) locus acts as a homeotic and morphogenetic regulator in the development of ovaries, appendages and the abdomen. It consists of two structurally and functionally related genes, bab1 and bab2, each of which encodes a single nuclear protein. Bab1 and Bab2 have two conserved domains in common, a BTB/POZ domain and a Psq domain, a motif that characterizes a subfamily of BTB/POZ domain proteins in Drosophila. The tissue distribution of Bab1 and Bab2 overlaps, with Bab1 being expressed in a subpattern of Bab2. Analysis of a series of mutations indicates that the two bab genes have synergistic, distinct and redundant functions during imaginal development. Interestingly, several reproduction-related traits that are sexually dimorphic or show diversity among Drosophila species are highly sensitive to changes in the bab gene dose, suggesting that alterations in bab activity may contribute to evolutionary modification of sex-related morphology.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Abdomen / growth & development
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Body Patterning
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics*
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism
  • Extremities / growth & development
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Genitalia, Female / growth & development
  • Genitalia, Male / growth & development
  • Larva
  • Male
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Ovary / abnormalities
  • Ovary / growth & development
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Repressor Proteins / chemistry
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Transcription Factors / genetics*
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism


  • ABTB1 protein, human
  • BAB2 protein, Drosophila
  • Bric-a-brac protein 1, Drosophila
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Transcription Factors