Mouse Hox-2.2 specifies thoracic segmental identity in Drosophila embryos and larvae

Cell. 1990 Nov 30;63(5):961-7. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(90)90499-5.


The mouse genome has a number of homeobox genes that are structurally similar to the Drosophila Antenapedia (Antp) gene. We find that one of the mouse Antp-like genes, Hox-2.2, when expressed in developing Drosophila cells under control of a heat shock promoter, can induce homeotic transformations that are nearly identical to those caused by ectopic expression of Antp. In larvae, the Hox-2.2-induced transformations include thoracic denticle belts in place of head structures; in adults, the Hox-2.2 transformations include thoracic legs in place of antennae. The phenotypic effects of Hox-2.2 do not depend on the endogenous Antp gene, whose spatial limits of expression are unaffected by Hox-2.2 expression. Thus, in the Drosophila embryo, Hox-2.2 can substitute for some of the segmental identity functions of Antp, presumably by regulating the same set of downstream genes.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • 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
  • Cloning, Molecular*
  • Drosophila / embryology
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian / physiology
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes, Homeobox*
  • Heat-Shock Proteins / genetics*
  • Larva
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phenotype
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Thorax


  • Heat-Shock Proteins