Spatially controlled expression of the Drosophila pseudouridine synthase RluA-1

Int J Dev Biol. 2011;55(2):223-7. doi: 10.1387/ijdb.103112cw.


Pseudouridine (Ψ) synthases function in the formation of Ψ, the most abundant of the modified RNA residues. All Ψ synthases in E. coli are classified into one of five families according to their sequences. Among them, members of the RluA Ψ synthase family catalyze certain Ψ formations in ribosomal RNA. RluA family members are required for ribosomal assembly and bacterial growth. None of the RluA in multicellular organisms has been studied. In the Drosophila peripheral nervous system, multiple dendritic (MD) neurons are recognized by their dendritic arbors. MD neurons can also be identified by using the enhancer trap line E7-2-36, which expresses the lacZ gene in MD neurons. Here, we show that the P-element of E7-2-36 inserts into the Drosophila RluA-1 gene. RluA-1 is homologous to E. coli RluA family members and is evolutionarily conserved in multicellular organisms. In situ hybridization and immunocytochemistry revealed that RluA-1 is expressed in MD neurons. We investigated the RluA-1 enhancer responsible for MD expression and found that the membrane-tethered green fluorescent protein driven by RluA-1-GAL4 was expressed in the dendritic arbors of MD neurons, confirming that RluA-1 is indeed expressed in MD neurons. Thus, the expression of RluA-1 is spatially controlled during development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dendrites / genetics
  • Drosophila melanogaster / enzymology*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / genetics
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Intramolecular Transferases / biosynthesis*
  • Intramolecular Transferases / genetics*
  • Lac Operon
  • Peripheral Nervous System
  • RNA, Ribosomal / genetics
  • RNA, Ribosomal / metabolism


  • RNA, Ribosomal
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Intramolecular Transferases
  • pseudouridine synthases