Two Pax genes, eye gone and eyeless, act cooperatively in promoting Drosophila eye development

Chuen Chuen Jang, Ju Lan Chao, Nikolas Jones, Li Chin Yao, Dmitri A. Bessarab, Yien M. Kuo, Susie Jun, Claude Desplan, Steven K. Beckendorf, Y. Henry Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report the identification of a Drosophila Pax gene, eye gone (eyg), which is required for eye development. Loss-of-function eyg mutations cause reduction or absence of the eye. Similar to the Pax6 eyeless (ey) gene, ectopic expression of eyg induces extra eye formation, but at sites different from those induced by ey. Several lines of evidence suggest that eyg and ey act cooperatively: (1) eyg expression is not regulated by ey, nor does it regulate ey expression, (2) eyg-induced ectopic morphogenetic furrow formation does not require ey, nor does ey-induced ectopic eye production require eyg, (3) eyg and ey can partially substitute for the function of the other, and (4) coexpression of eyg and ey has a synergistic enhancement of ectopic eye formation. Our results also show that eyg has two major functions: to promote cell proliferation in the eye disc and to promote eye development through suppression of wg transcription.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2939-2951
Number of pages13
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 2003


  • Drosophila
  • Eye development
  • Eye gone
  • Eyeless
  • Morphogenetic furrow
  • Pax gene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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