Generating lineage-specific markers to study Drosophila development

Dev Genet. 1991;12(3):238-52. doi: 10.1002/dvg.1020120309.


To generate cell- and tissue-specific expression patterns of the reporter gene lacZ in Drosophila, we have generated and characterized 1,426 independent insertion strains using four different P-element constructs. These four transposons carry a lacZ gene driven either by the weak promoter of the P-element transposase gene or by partial promoters from the even-skipped, fushi-tarazu, or engrailed genes. The tissue-specific patterns of beta-galactosidase expression that we are able to generate depend on the promoter utilized. We describe in detail 13 strains that can be used to follow specific cell lineages and demonstrate their utility in analyzing the phenotypes of developmental mutants. Insertion strains generated with P-elements that carry various sequences upstream of the lacZ gene exhibit an increased variety of expression patterns that can be used to study Drosophila development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA Transposable Elements
  • Drosophila / embryology
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression
  • Genetic Markers / genetics*
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Male
  • Mutation
  • Organ Specificity / genetics
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • beta-Galactosidase / genetics


  • DNA Transposable Elements
  • Genetic Markers
  • beta-Galactosidase