Why Drosophila to study phototransduction?

J Neurogenet. 2010 Jul;24(2):55-66. doi: 10.3109/01677061003797302.


This review recounts the early history of Drosophila phototransduction genetics, covering the period between approximately 1966 to 1979. Early in this period, the author felt that there was an urgent need for a new approach in phototransduction research. Through inputs from a number of colleagues, he was led to consider isolating Drosophila mutants that are defective in the electroretinogram. Thanks to the efforts of dedicated associates and technical staff, by the end of this period, he was able to accumulate a large number of such mutants. Particularly important in this effort was the use of the mutant assay protocol based on the "prolonged depolarizing afterpotential." This collection of mutants formed the basis of the subsequent intensive investigations of the Drosophila phototransduction cascade by many investigators.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics
  • Drosophila melanogaster / physiology*
  • Electrophysiology / history*
  • Electroretinography / history
  • History, 20th Century
  • Models, Animal*
  • Mutation*
  • Photoreceptor Cells, Invertebrate / physiology*
  • Vision, Ocular / genetics*