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Kaschula, R., Pinho, S., Alonso, C.R. (2018). MicroRNA-dependent regulation of Hox gene expression sculpts fine-grain morphological patterns in a Drosophila appendage.  Development 145(20): dev161133.
FlyBase ID
FBrf0240383
Publication Type
Research paper
Abstract

Disruptions of normal Hox gene expression can lead to severe morphological defects, revealing a link between the regulation of Hox expression and pattern formation. Here, we explore these links, focusing on the impact of microRNA regulation on the expression of the Drosophila Hox gene Ultrabithorax (Ubx) during haltere development. Through a combination of bioinformatic and transcriptomic analyses, we identify the miR-310/313 cluster (miR-310C) as a candidate regulator of Ubx Several experiments confirm this. First, miR-310C and Ubx protein show complementary expression patterns in haltere imaginal discs; second, artificial activation of miR-310C expression in haltere discs leads to Ubx-like phenotypes. Third, expression of a fluorescent reporter bearing Ubx 3'UTR sequences is reduced when co-expressed with miR-310C Fourth, deletion of miR-310C leads to Ubx upregulation and changes the array of mechanosensory sensilla at the base of the haltere. Fifth, an artificial increase of Ubx levels within the miR-310C expression domain phenocopies the mechanosensory defects observed in miR-310C mutants. We propose that miR-310C-mediated repression delimits Ubx fine-grain expression, contributing to the sculpting of complex morphologies in the Drosophila haltere with implications for flight control. Our work reveals a novel role of microRNA regulation in the control of Hox gene expression with impact on morphology.

PubMed ID
PubMed Central ID
PMC6215401 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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    Language of Publication
    English
    Additional Languages of Abstract
    Parent Publication
    Publication Type
    Journal
    Abbreviation
    Development
    Title
    Development
    Publication Year
    1987-
    ISBN/ISSN
    0950-1991
    Data From Reference