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The passage of highly specialized germ cells to future generations is essential for the maintenance of species. To date, conventional genetic screens identified relatively few genes that are involved in germ cell development. We aimed to identify germ line specific genes on the X chromosome of Drosophila melanogaster by the application of a new method: the dual-tagging gene-trap system (GT). A modified version of the gene-trap element was used in our experiments and the resulting insertional mutants were screened for grandchild-less phenotype with the help of the attached-X system and a sensitized genetic background developed in our laboratory. Among the 800 insertions mapped to the X chromosome 33 new mutations were identified that exhibited grandchild-less phenotype, 6 gave visible phenotype and 12 were conditional lethal. The cloning of a selected group of the 33 lines showing grandchild-less pheno-type confirmed that we have identified new candidates for genes involved in germ cell development. One of them named pebbled ( peb ) is discussed in details in this paper. Finally, we also describe a novel automatic selection system developed in our laboratory which enables the extension of the GT mutagenesis to the autosomes.

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Acta Biologica Hungarica
Authors: Éva Kurucz, B. Váczi, R. Márkus, Barbara Laurinyecz, P. Vilmos, J. Zsámboki, Kinga Csorba, Elisabeth Gateff, D. Hultmark, and I. Andó

We analyzed the heterogeneity of Drosophila hemocytes on the basis of the expression of cell-type specific antigens. The antigens characterize distinct subsets which partially overlap with those defined by morphological criteria. On the basis of the expression or the lack of expression of blood cell antigens the following hemocyte populations have been defined: crystal cells, plasmatocytes, lamellocytes and precursor cells. The expression of the antigens and thus the different cell types are developmentally regulated. The hemocytes are arranged in four main compartments: the circulating blood cells, the sessile tissue, the lymph glands and the posterior hematopoietic tissue. Each hemocyte compartment has a specific and characteristic composition of the various cell types. The described markers represent the first successful attempt to define hemocyte lineages by immunological markers in Drosophila and help to define morphologically, functionally, spatially and developmentally distinct subsets of hemocytes.

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