The cellular homologs of the ets gene from the avian erythroblastosis retrovirus E26 have been studied in chickens, humans, mice, and cats. In this report a further evolutionary step is taken by isolating and characterizing a Drosophila ets-related genomic clone. Sequence analysis of this clone has shown it to contain the 3' end of the v-ets gene, called ets-2, corresponding to the last two exons of chicken ets. The predicted amino acid sequence was found to have over 90% homology when compared to that of v-ets. This is the highest level of conservation observed for any previously characterized Drosophila oncogene homolog. Expression of the ets-2 gene occurs throughout development, but is highest during the embryonic and pupal stages. By in situ hybridization, the ets-2 chromosomal position was determined to be 58A/B which corresponds to no known phenotypic mutant. As this is a highly conserved gene, the Drosophila model system should prove useful for the determination of the ets gene function.