Image of the Day: Fragile Fly 

Researchers examine the effects on the fruit fly intestine of the protein responsible for Fragile X syndrome in humans. 

The Scientist Staff and The Scientist Staff
Dec 7, 2017

Four intestinal samples extracted from Drosophila flies: a normal intestine (white), a larger-than-average intestine with a mutated FMR1 gene (red), a smaller-than-average intestine with a different mutation (green), and an intestine with both mutations (yellow) ARTHUR LUHUR, INDIANA UNIVERSITYFragile X syndrome is caused by a mutation in a single gene, which encodes Fragile X mental retardation protein. Scientists have taken a close look at how this protein affects tissue growth, finding that it limits the expansion of a stem cell population during intestinal growth in Drosophila flies. 

A. Luhur et al., "Opposing post-transcriptional control of InR by FMRP and LIN-28 adjusts stem-cell based tissue growth," Cell, doi:10.1016/j.celrep.2017.11.039, 2017.