How do germ cells choose their sex? Drosophila as a paradigm

Bioessays. 1992 Aug;14(8):513-8. doi: 10.1002/bies.950140803.


Sex determination in the germ line may either rely on cell-autonomous genetic information, or it may be imposed during development by inductive somatic signals. In Drosophila, both mechanisms contribute to ensure that germ cells are oogenic when differentiating in females and spermatogenic when differentiating in males. Some of the genes that are involved in germ line sex determination have been identified. In other species, including vertebrates, inductive signals are commonly used to determine the sex of germ cells.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drosophila melanogaster / embryology
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics
  • Drosophila melanogaster / physiology*
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian / cytology
  • Embryonic Induction
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Genotype
  • Germ Cells / physiology*
  • Insecta / physiology
  • Male
  • Mammals / physiology
  • Sex Determination Analysis*
  • Species Specificity
  • X Chromosome
  • Y Chromosome