Alterations in the cellular synthesis of kynurenine in the larval fatbody of Drosophila melanogaster may be obtained by feeding the precursor tryptophan or by changing the genotype. In the wild type Ore-R strain, autofluorescent kynurenine globules normally occur in the cells in the anterior regions of the fatbody designated as regions 1, 2, and 3. When tryptophan is included in the larval diet, kynurenine will develop throughout the entire fatbody, thus extending to the cells in regions 4, 5, and 6. In the fatbodies of both the sepia mutant strain and the mutant combinations of the suppressible vermilion alleles with the suppressor gene (su2-s, v1 and su2-s, v2), kynurenine is found in the cells from region 1 through region 4. This involvement of additional cells in the synthesis of kynurenine occurs under the usual culture conditions for Drosophila. When sepia larvae are fed tryptophan, kynurenine appears in all of the cells of the fatbody. However, dietary tryptophan does not induce kynurenine production in cells in regions 5 and 6 in the mutant combination su2-s, v1 or su2-s, v2. In the latter strains, an increase in the quantity of kynurenine in the fatbody is detected, but this increase remains limited to the same cells in which kynurenine production is found under normal feeding conditions. When the v36f allele is combined with the su2-s allele, an extremely faint autofluorescence characteristic of kynurenine is found in some of the anteriormost fat cells of regions 1 and 2. This autofluorescence becomes intensified when tryptophan is fed to su2-s, v36f larvae. The genetic control of kynurenine synthesis in the cells of the fatbody of Drosophila melanogaster has been previously demonstrated. The present observations establish genetic regulation of the ability to induce kynurenine production within a cell through the administration of the inducer tryptophan. Kynurenine production has been considered as a unit function of the cell as a whole rather than of the enzyme alone, and it has been concluded that even though cells in different parts of the body perform this same function (kynurenine production), the gene loci regulating this function may be different for cells in different regions of the body. A phenomenon of overlapping domains of gene actions at the cellular level offers a genetic and cellular basis for developmental and physiological homeostasis.

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