A tissue-specific transcription enhancer from the Drosophila yolk protein 1 gene

Cell. 1986 Jun 20;45(6):859-67. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(86)90560-x.


The yolk protein 1 gene (yp1) of Drosophila melanogaster is expressed only in the ovarian follicle cells and the fat bodies of adult females. We have previously shown that a different cis-acting DNA region is required for each of these tissue specificities. In this paper we use germ line transformation to localize and characterized one of these tissue-specific regulatory regions. We demonstrate that a 125 bp segment of DNA located 196 bp upstream of the yp1 cap site is sufficient to determine the sex-, stage-, and fat body-specific expression of the yp1 gene. We also find that this region can confer yp1-specific expression on a heterologous Drosophila promoter. This specificity is retained when the region is in different orientations and at different distances from the heterologous promoter. Thus a small regulatory region acts in vivo as a positive enhancer to determine the fat body expression pattern of yp1.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Chromosome Deletion
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics*
  • Egg Proteins / genetics*
  • Egg Yolk
  • Enhancer Elements, Genetic*
  • Female
  • Genes
  • Genes, Regulator*
  • Male
  • Mutation
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • RNA / genetics
  • Transcription, Genetic*


  • Egg Proteins
  • RNA