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Gene Review

vg  -  vestigial

Drosophila melanogaster

Synonyms: CG3830, Dmel\CG3830, Protein vestigial, VG, Vg, ...
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Disease relevance of vg

  • In agreement with our hypothesis no cell death was observed in null vg mutants, and the anticell death baculovirus P35 product is unable to rescue the mutant phenotype caused by absence of the Vg product [1].

High impact information on vg

  • Scalloped (Sd) and Vestigial (Vg) are each needed for Drosophila wing development [2].
  • The Vestigial and Scalloped proteins act together to directly regulate wing-specific gene expression in Drosophila [3].
  • Genetic and molecular analyses reveal that Vestigial regulates wing identity by forming a complex with the Scalloped protein that binds sequence specifically to essential sites in wing-specific enhancers [3].
  • Here, we show that Vestigial requires the function of the Scalloped protein, a member of the TEA family of transcriptional regulators, to directly activate the expression of genes involved in wing morphogenesis [3].
  • For example, ectopic expressions of Vestigial can convert Drosophila leg to wing; of C/EBPbeta can convert pancreatic exocrine cells to hepatocytes; and expression of C/EBPalpha and PPARgamma can convert myoblasts to adipocytes [4].

Biological context of vg

  • Moreover, ectopic vg drives cell cycle progression and in HeLa cultured cells, the VG-SD dimer induces cell proliferation per se [5].
  • We also show that a specific vg regulatory element, the vg boundary enhancer, is required for transdetermination [6].
  • The SD protein forms part of a transcriptional activation complex with the protein encoded by vestigial (vg) that, in turn, activates target genes important for wing formation [7].
  • Moreover, a decrease in VG or addition of aminopterin, a specific DHFR inhibitor, shift the dorso-ventral boundary cells of the disc to a cell death sensitive state that is correlated with reaper induction and DIAP1 downregulation [5].
  • Moreover, we were able to rescue the muscle phenotype of vg(null) flies by using the activity of ap promoter to drive VG expression [8].

Anatomical context of vg

  • Other myoblasts, which express high levels of Cut but no Vestigial, are required for the formation of the direct flight muscles [9].
  • Misexpression of Vestigial, the transcription factor that specifies the wing blade, both increases cpa transcription and makes cells dependent on cpa for their maintenance in the epithelium [10].

Associations of vg with chemical compounds

  • We propose that the vg phenotype is due to a decrease in the dTMP pool in the wings [11].

Regulatory relationships of vg

  • We have previously shown that ectopic expression of wingless (wg) induces leg disc cells to activate expression of the wing marker Vestigial (Vg) and transdetermine to wing cells [6].
  • In Drosophila, ectopic vg induces expression of dE2F1 and its targets dRNR2 and string [5].
  • Our results reveal that vg is involved in the specification of the wing primordium under the combined control of Notch and wingless signaling [12].

Other interactions of vg

  • We further show that Vestigial and Notch collaborate with Wingless to subdivide and pattern the wing blade [13].
  • In particular, Vestigial provides an important input for the regulation of the activity of the vgQE acting in concert with Wingless and Decapentaplegic [13].
  • We show that vg and scalloped (sd), the only known VG transcriptional coactivator, are coexpressed during IFM development [8].
  • We investigated the role of the VG-SD dimer in proliferation and showed that vg antagonizes the effect of dacapo, the cyclin-cdk inhibitor [5].
  • Our results demonstrate that Drifter functions along with MAD as a direct activator of Vestigial expression in the wing pouch [14].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of vg

  • The functional dissection of SD confirms that specific regions are necessary for wing development and provides further information as to how the SD VG complex functions to promote wing fate [15].
  • VG is also a nuclear protein providing the activator function for the SD VG complex [15].


  1. Truncated products of the vestigial proliferation gene induce apoptosis. Van de Bor, V., Delanoue, R., Cossard, R., Silber, J. Cell Death Differ. (1999) [Pubmed]
  2. Molecular interactions between Vestigial and Scalloped promote wing formation in Drosophila. Simmonds, A.J., Liu, X., Soanes, K.H., Krause, H.M., Irvine, K.D., Bell, J.B. Genes Dev. (1998) [Pubmed]
  3. The Vestigial and Scalloped proteins act together to directly regulate wing-specific gene expression in Drosophila. Halder, G., Polaczyk, P., Kraus, M.E., Hudson, A., Kim, J., Laughon, A., Carroll, S. Genes Dev. (1998) [Pubmed]
  4. Transdifferentiation and metaplasia--switching cell types. Slack, J.M., Tosh, D. Curr. Opin. Genet. Dev. (2001) [Pubmed]
  5. The Drosophila wing differentiation factor vestigial-scalloped is required for cell proliferation and cell survival at the dorso-ventral boundary of the wing imaginal disc. Delanoue, R., Legent, K., Godefroy, N., Flagiello, D., Dutriaux, A., Vaudin, P., Becker, J.L., Silber, J. Cell Death Differ. (2004) [Pubmed]
  6. A molecular basis for transdetermination in Drosophila imaginal discs: interactions between wingless and decapentaplegic signaling. Maves, L., Schubiger, G. Development (1998) [Pubmed]
  7. Further developmental roles of the Vestigial/Scalloped transcription complex during wing development in Drosophila melanogaster. Srivastava, A., Bell, J.B. Mech. Dev. (2003) [Pubmed]
  8. Control of apterous by vestigial drives indirect flight muscle development in Drosophila. Bernard, F., Lalouette, A., Gullaud, M., Jeantet, A.Y., Cossard, R., Zider, A., Ferveur, J.F., Silber, J. Dev. Biol. (2003) [Pubmed]
  9. Myoblast diversification and ectodermal signaling in Drosophila. Sudarsan, V., Anant, S., Guptan, P., VijayRaghavan, K., Skaer, H. Dev. Cell (2001) [Pubmed]
  10. Actin capping protein {alpha} maintains vestigial-expressing cells within the Drosophila wing disc epithelium. Janody, F., Treisman, J.E. Development (2006) [Pubmed]
  11. Vestigial mutants of Drosophila melanogaster live better in the presence of aminopterin: increased level of dihydrofolate reductase in a mutant. Silber, J., Bazin, C., Le Menn, A. Mol. Gen. Genet. (1989) [Pubmed]
  12. Different spatial and temporal interactions between Notch, wingless, and vestigial specify proximal and distal pattern elements of the wing in Drosophila. Klein, T., Arias, A.M. Dev. Biol. (1998) [Pubmed]
  13. The vestigial gene product provides a molecular context for the interpretation of signals during the development of the wing in Drosophila. Klein, T., Arias, A.M. Development (1999) [Pubmed]
  14. Restricted patterning of vestigial expression in Drosophila wing imaginal discs requires synergistic activation by both Mad and the drifter POU domain transcription factor. Certel, K., Hudson, A., Carroll, S.B., Johnson, W.A. Development (2000) [Pubmed]
  15. Ability of scalloped deletion constructs to rescue sd mutant wing phenotypes in Drosophila melanogaster. Chow, L., Berube, J., Fromont, A., Bell, J.B. Genome (2004) [Pubmed]
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