Overlapping Lsp-2 gene sequences target expression to both the larval and adult Drosophila fat body

Insect Mol Biol. 1996 Feb;5(1):39-49. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2583.1996.tb00039.x.


Larval serum protein-2 gene (Lsp-2) of Drosophila melanogaster encodes one of the major hexameric haemolymph proteins of third-instar larvae and a major component of adult serum. Regulated transcription of Lsp-2 results in high-level, ecdysone-stimulated expression throughout the larval fat body and low-level, spatially restricted expression in the adult fat cells. To localize cis-acting regulatory sequences responsible for the stage- and tissue-specific activity at Lsp-2, the expression of Lsp-2-lacZ fusion genes was studied by P element-mediated germline transformation of Drosophila. A 230 base pair larval enhancer, which includes an ecdysone response element (EcRE), specifically targets gene activity to the larval fat body. Although the adult mode of Lsp-2 expression depends on the larval enhancer, additional negative regulatory elements dictate both tissue-specificity and unique spatial restriction within the adult fat body. Implications of these findings for the identification of fat body-specific gene regulatory units in other insects are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA
  • Drosophila Proteins*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics*
  • Enhancer Elements, Genetic
  • Fat Body*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Genes, Overlapping*
  • Insect Hormones / genetics*
  • Lac Operon
  • Larva / genetics
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Regulatory Sequences, Nucleic Acid*


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Insect Hormones
  • larval serum protein, Drosophila
  • DNA