The Drosophila. gene, dorsal, is a maternal effect locus that is essential for the establishment of dorsal-ventral polarity in the developing embryo. The dorsal protein was predicted from the complementary DNA sequence; it is almost 50 percent identical, over an extensive region, to the protein encoded by the avian oncogene v-rel, its cellular homolog, c-rel, and a human c-rel fragment. The oncogene v-rel is highly oncogenic in avian lymphoid, spleen, and bone marrow cells.
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