A genetic screen for dominant modifiers of a cyclin E hypomorphic mutation identifies novel regulators of S-phase entry in drosophila

Anthony Brumby, Julie Secombe, Julie Horsfield, Michelle Coombe, Nancy Amin, Deborah Coates, Robert Saint, Helena Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Cyclin E together with its kinase partner Cdk2 is a critical regulator of entry into S phase. To identify novel genes that regulate the G1- to S-phase transition within a whole animal we made use of a hypomorphic cyclin E mutation, DmcycEJP, which results in a rough eye phenotype. We screened the X and third chromosome deficiencies, tested candidate genes, and carried out a genetic screen of 55,000 EMS or X-ray-mutagenized flies for second or third chromosome mutations that dominantly modified the DmcycEJP rough eye phenotype. We have focused on the DmcycEJP suppressors, S(DmcycE JP), to identify novel negative regulators of S-phase entry. There are 18 suppressor gene groups with more than one allele and several genes that are represented by only a single allele. All S(DmcycEJP) tested suppress the DmcycEJP rough eye phenotype by increasing the number of S phases in the postmorphogenetic furrow S-phase band. By testing candidates we have identified several modifier genes from the mutagenic screen as well as from the deficiency screen. DmcycEJP suppressor genes fall into the classes of: (1) chromatin remodeling or transcription factors; (2) signaling pathways; and (3) cytoskeletal, (4) cell adhesion, and (5) cytoarchitectural tumor suppressors. The cytoarchitectural tumor suppressors include scribble, lethal-2-giant-larvae (lgl), and discs-large (dlg), loss of function of which leads to neoplastic tumors and disruption of apical-basal cell polarity. We further explored the genetic interactions of scribble with S(DmcycE JP) genes and show that hypomorphic scribble mutants exhibit genetic interactions with lgl, scab (αPS3-integrin - cell adhesion), phyllopod (signaling), dEB1 (microtubule-binding protein - cytoskeletal), and moira (chromatin remodeling). These interactions of the cytoarchitectural suppressor gene, scribble, with cell adhesion, signaling, cytoskeletal, and chromatin remodeling genes, suggest that these genes may act in a common pathway to negatively regulate cyclin E or S-phase entry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)227-251
Number of pages25
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics


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