The no-on-transient-A gene was identified by independently isolated mutations causing visual-response abnormalities or courtship song defects. The nonA(diss) mutant is abnormal for all of these phenotypes. The pleiotropic effects of this dissonance allele dovetail with the widespread tissue expression of the nonA products. This gene, which encodes a putative RNA-binding protein, is expressed at essentially all stages of the life cycle. To determine whether the behavioral and physiological abnormalities exhibited by nonA mutant adults have a developmental etiology or are the result of an impaired mature nervous (or perhaps neuro-muscular) system, a conditional form of this gene was constructed. Animals from the resulting hsp-nonA (cDNA) transgenic strain were subjected to heat-shock regimes such that the gene's coding sequences were activated during development only, solely in the imaginal stage, or both. Surprisingly, expression during any of these time periods effected rescue of the visual-response and the courtship-song defects.