Gene regulatory networks during the development of the Drosophila visual system

Yen Chung Chen, Claude Desplan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The Drosophila visual system integrates input from 800 ommatidia and extracts different features in stereotypically connected optic ganglia. The development of the Drosophila visual system is controlled by gene regulatory networks that control the number of precursor cells, generate neuronal diversity by integrating spatial and temporal information, coordinate the timing of retinal and optic lobe cell differentiation, and determine distinct synaptic targets of each cell type. In this chapter, we describe the known gene regulatory networks involved in the development of the different parts of the visual system and explore general components in these gene networks. Finally, we discuss the advantages of the fly visual system as a model for gene regulatory network discovery in the era of single-cell transcriptomics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationGene Regulatory Networks
PublisherAcademic Press Inc.
Number of pages37
StatePublished - 2020

Publication series

NameCurrent topics in developmental biology
ISSN (Print)0070-2153


  • Drosophila visual system
  • Fate specification
  • Gene regulatory network
  • Neural diversity
  • Drosophila/classification
  • Eye/embryology
  • Gene Regulatory Networks
  • Retina/cytology
  • Animals
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Drosophila melanogaster/embryology
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian/cytology
  • Cell Differentiation/genetics
  • Optic Lobe, Nonmammalian/cytology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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