The maternal ventralizing locus torpedo is allelic to faint little ball, an embryonic lethal, and encodes the Drosophila EGF receptor homolog

Cell. 1989 Mar 24;56(6):1085-92. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(89)90641-7.


The torpedo gene of Drosophila melanogaster is involved in the establishment of the dorsoventral pattern of eggshell and embryo. We have isolated new alleles of torpedo and have found that torpedo is allelic to the zygotic embryonic lethal faint little ball. We have shown that torpedo resides in subdivision 57F on the second chromosome--at the same location as the Drosophila homolog of the EGF receptor (DER). Using a cosmid that contains most of the DER coding region as a hybridization probe, we have shown that a cytologically small deficiency that eliminates torpedo activity also removes the DER gene, and that an inversion that was isolated as a strong torpedo allele breaks the coding region of the DER gene. We conclude that torpedo is the DER gene.

Publication types

  • 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

  • Alleles*
  • Animals
  • Blotting, Southern
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • DNA / analysis
  • Drosophila Proteins*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics*
  • ErbB Receptors / genetics*
  • Female
  • Genes, Lethal*
  • Male
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization
  • Phenotype
  • Protein Kinases*
  • Receptors, Invertebrate Peptide*
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Receptors, Invertebrate Peptide
  • DNA
  • Protein Kinases
  • Egfr protein, Drosophila
  • ErbB Receptors