Dissatisfaction encodes a tailless-like nuclear receptor expressed in a subset of CNS neurons controlling Drosophila sexual behavior

Neuron. 1998 Dec;21(6):1363-74. doi: 10.1016/s0896-6273(00)80655-8.


The dissatisfaction (dsf) gene is necessary for appropriate sexual behavior and sex-specific neural development in both sexes. dsf males are bisexual and mate poorly, while mutant females resist male courtship and fail to lay eggs. Males and females have sex-specific neural abnormalities. We have cloned dsf and rescued both behavioral and neural phenotypes. dsf encodes a nuclear receptor closely related to the vertebrate Tailless proteins and is expressed in both sexes in an extremely limited set of neurons in regions of the brain potentially involved in sexual behavior. Expression of a female transformer cDNA under the control of a dsf enhancer in males leads to dsf-like bisexual behavior.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Binding Sites
  • Bisexuality
  • Drosophila / genetics
  • Drosophila / physiology*
  • Drosophila Proteins*
  • Enhancer Elements, Genetic
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Larva
  • Male
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutagenesis, Insertional
  • Nervous System Physiological Phenomena
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • Oviposition
  • Pupa
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / chemistry
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / genetics
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / physiology*
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Sexual Behavior, Animal*


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear
  • Tra protein, Drosophila
  • dsf protein, Drosophila

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AF106677