Lineage, migration, and morphogenesis of longitudinal glia in the Drosophila CNS as revealed by a molecular lineage marker Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Previous studies described three different classes of glial cells in the developing CNS of the early Drosophila embryo that prefigure and ensheath the major CNS axon tracts. Among these are 6 longitudinal glial cells on each side of each segment that overlie the longitudinal axon tracts. Here we use transformant lines carrying a P element containing a 130 bp sequence from the fushi tarazu gene in front of the lacZ reporter gene to direct beta-galactosidase expression in the longitudinal glia. Using this molecular lineage marker, we show that 1 of the "neuroblasts" in each hemisegment is actually a glioblast, which divides once symmetrically, in contrast to the typical asymmetric neuroblast divisions, producing 2 glial cells, which migrate medially and divide to generate the 6 longitudinal glial cells. As with neuroblasts, mutations in Notch and other neurogenic genes lead to supernumerary glioblasts. The results indicate that the glioblast is similar to other neuroblasts; however, the positionally specified fate of this blast cell is to generate a specific lineage of glia rather than a specific family of neurons.


  • Jacobs, J Roger
  • Roger Jacobs, J
  • Hiromi, Yasushi
  • Patel, Nipam H
  • Goodman, Corey S

publication date

  • June 1989

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