Isoform-specific null mutations were used to define the functions of three orphan members of the nuclear receptor superfamily, E75A, E75B, and E75C, encoded by the E75 early ecdysteroid-inducible gene. E75B mutants are viable and fertile, while E75C mutants die as adults. In contrast, E75A mutants have a reduced ecdysteroid titer during larval development, resulting in developmental delays, developmental arrests, and molting defects. Remarkably, some E75A mutant second instar larvae display a heterochronic phenotype in which they induce genes specific to the third instar and pupariate without undergoing a molt. We propose that ecdysteroid-induced E75A expression defines a feed-forward pathway that amplifies or maintains the ecdysteroid titer during larval development, ensuring proper temporal progression through the life cycle.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental Biology