The Ten-a gene of Drosophila melanogaster encodes several alternative variants of a full length member of the Odz/Tenm protein family. A number of Ten-a mutants created by inexact excisions of a resident P-element insertion are embryonic lethal, but show no pair-rule phenotype. In contrast, these mutants, and deficiencies removing Ten-a, do enhance the segmentation phenotype of a weak allele of the paralog gene odz (or Ten-m) to the odz amorphic phenotype. Germ line clone derived Ten-a(-) embryos display a pair-rule phenotype which phenocopies that of odz. Post segmentation eye patterning phenotypes of Ten-a mutants establish it as a pleiotropic patterning co-partner of odz.
THIS PAPER HAS BEEN RETRACTED, because the lethality and pair rule gene roles reported for Ten-a have since been shown to be due to second-site mutations (see the associated retraction FBrf0218896). The other findings (molecular and biochemical characterization of the Ten-a gene, its alleles and transcripts) remain as reported.