›› 2014, Vol. 57 ›› Issue (3): 356-364.doi:

• REVIEW ARTICLES • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Evolution of cis-regulatory sequences in Drosophila

TU Jian-Bo, SUN Bo-Yuan, LI Di-Yan, LI Ying, YANG Ming-Yao*   

  1. (Institute of Animal Genetics and Breeding, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu 611130, China)
  • Online:2014-03-20 Published:2014-03-20

Abstract:  Cis-regulatory sequences are parts of the non-coding DNA regions that are associated with regulation of gene expression, and they can be recognized and bound specifically by their regulatory factors. Cis-regulatory sequences can precisely regulate gene expression patterns spatially and temporally by increase or decrease of transcriptional binding sites and reorganization of gene regulatory networks, and then cause animals to develop different physical and morphological consequences. Cis-regulatory hypothesis considered that evolution of cis-regulatory sequences is the main genetic mechanism responsible for evolution of a variety of animal phenotypes in nature. Firstly this review briefly describes the structure and function of cis-regulatory sequences, and then focuses on the recent advances in evolution of cis-regulatory sequences regulating Drosophila phenotypes, such as bristles, pigmentations and embryo development, which demonstrate that evolution of cis-regulatory sequences is one of the major mechanisms responsible for evolution of animal phenotypes. Finally, the review suggests the future research directions for the cis-regulatory sequences, such as functional genomics and encyclopedia of DNA elements, which provide a good reference for the cis-regulatory sequence research in evolutionary developmental biology.

Key words: Drosophila, evolutionary developmental biology, cis-regulatory sequences, gene expression, evolution, phenotype