Clonal analysis of two mutations in the large subunit of RNA polymerase II of Drosophila.

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Two mutations in the gene, RpII215, were analyzed to determine their effects on cell differentiation and proliferation. The mutations differ in that one, RpII215ts (ts), only displays a conditional recessive lethality, while the other, RpII215Ubl (Ubl), is a recessive lethal mutation that also displays a dominant mutant phenotype similar to that caused by the mutation Ultrabithorax (Ubx). Ubl causes a partial transformation of the haltere into a wing; however, this transformation is more complete in flies carrying both Ubl and Ubx. The present study shows that patches of Ubl/-tissue in gynandromorphs are morphologically normal. cuticle that has lost the wild-type copy of the RpII215 locus fails to show a haltere to wing transformation, nor does it show the synergistic enhancement of Ubx by Ubl. We conclude that an interaction between the two RpII215 alleles, Ubl and RpII215+, is responsible for the mutant phenotype. Gynandromorphs carrying the ts allele, when raised at permissive temperature, display larger patches of ts/-cuticle than expected, possibly indicating that the proliferation of ts/+ cells is reduced. This might result from an antagonistic interaction between different RpII215 alleles. Classical negative complementation does not appear to be the cause of the antagonistic interactions described above, as only one RpII215 subunit is thought to be present in an active multimeric polymerase enzyme. We have therefore coined the term 'negative heterosis' to describe the aforementioned interactions. We also observed that the effects of mutationally altered RNA polymerase II on somatic cells are different from its effects on germ cells.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Last updated on 10/06/2016