Histamine has been shown to be an important neurotransmitter used in the nervous system of Drosophila melanogaster. Histidine decarboxylase (HDC) is the enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of histamine. All genetic information necessary for Hdc gene expression has been shown to be present in a 9.4kb genomic DNA fragment. A previous study fused the 5'-UTR of Hdc to the gene encoding eGFP. Microscopic analysis of flies transformed with the pHdc-eGFP transgene showed a weak pattern of eGFP expression in the nervous system as compared to histamine localization, indicating that another genomic region may be necessary for robust Hdc expression. Studies in other systems have suggested that the 3’UTR of a gene may play an important role in its expression. Current efforts are focused on the construction of a transgene that fuses the 3’ UTR of Hdc to the existing pHdc-eGFP transgene. Examination of GFP expression in flies bearing this new transgene (pHdc-eGFP-3'UTR) may demonstrate the role that the 3’ UTR has in Hdc expression.
Hyde, Embriette and Burg, Martin G., "Construction of a transgene to analyze the function of the 3’UTR of the Hdc gene on spatial expression of histidine decarboxylase in Drosophila melanogaster" (2009). Student Summer Scholars. Paper 19.