Functions of the white and topaz loci of Lucilia cuprina in the production of the eye pigment xanthommatin

K M Summers, A J Howells

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The white and topaz eye color mutants of L. cuprina are defective in the production of the brown screening pigment xanthommatin. Both white and topaz mutants were found to be unable to accumulate xanthommatin precursors in the larval malpighian tubules, correlating with their reduced early pupal level of this metabolite. In addition, white mutants showed reduced rates of accumulation of kynurenine and 3-hydroxykynurenine in the adult eyes. Another mutant strain, grape, was also defective in its ability to accumulate these xanthommatin precursors in the eyes, although accumulation was normal in the larval tubules. In contrast, the topaz mutants were found to be normal in eye accumulation, although tubule accumulation was markedly abnormal. These properties of the white and topaz mutants of L. cuprina are compared with those of the white and scarlet mutants of D. melanogaster, and it seems likely that in the two species these genes are involved with the uptake or storage of xanthommatin precursors in specific tissues.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)643-53
Number of pages11
JournalBiochemical genetics
Volume18
Issue number7-8
Publication statusPublished - 1980

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