Imaginal Discs: Hollow sacs of cells in LARVA that form adult structures in insects during BIOLOGICAL METAMORPHOSIS.WingDrosophila Proteins: Proteins that originate from insect species belonging to the genus DROSOPHILA. The proteins from the most intensely studied species of Drosophila, DROSOPHILA MELANOGASTER, are the subject of much interest in the area of MORPHOGENESIS and development.Drosophila: A genus of small, two-winged flies containing approximately 900 described species. These organisms are the most extensively studied of all genera from the standpoint of genetics and cytology.Intervertebral Disc: Any of the 23 plates of fibrocartilage found between the bodies of adjacent VERTEBRAE.Drosophila melanogaster: A species of fruit fly much used in genetics because of the large size of its chromosomes.Larva: Wormlike or grublike stage, following the egg in the life cycle of insects, worms, and other metamorphosing animals.Wnt1 Protein: A proto-oncogene protein and member of the Wnt family of proteins. It is expressed in the caudal MIDBRAIN and is essential for proper development of the entire mid-/hindbrain region.Eye: The organ of sight constituting a pair of globular organs made up of a three-layered roughly spherical structure specialized for receiving and responding to light.Genes, Insect: The functional hereditary units of INSECTS.Pupa: An inactive stage between the larval and adult stages in the life cycle of insects.Insect Proteins: Proteins found in any species of insect.Intervertebral Disc Displacement: An INTERVERTEBRAL DISC in which the nucleus pulposus has protruded through surrounding fibrocartilage. This occurs most frequently in the lower lumbar region.Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control of gene action during the developmental stages of an organism.Metamorphosis, Biological: Profound physical changes during maturation of living organisms from the immature forms to the adult forms, such as from TADPOLES to frogs; caterpillars to BUTTERFLIES.Morphogenesis: The development of anatomical structures to create the form of a single- or multi-cell organism. Morphogenesis provides form changes of a part, parts, or the whole organism.Body Patterning: The processes occurring in early development that direct morphogenesis. They specify the body plan ensuring that cells will proceed to differentiate, grow, and diversify in size and shape at the correct relative positions. Included are axial patterning, segmentation, compartment specification, limb position, organ boundary patterning, blood vessel patterning, etc.Insect Hormones: Hormones secreted by insects. They influence their growth and development. Also synthetic substances that act like insect hormones.Intervertebral Disc Degeneration: Degenerative changes in the INTERVERTEBRAL DISC due to aging or structural damage, especially to the vertebral end-plates.Extremities: The farthest or outermost projections of the body, such as the HAND and FOOT.Ecdysone: A steroid hormone that regulates the processes of MOLTING or ecdysis in insects.Animals, Genetically Modified: ANIMALS whose GENOME has been altered by GENETIC ENGINEERING, or their offspring.Embryonic Structures: The anatomical parts that make up an organism in the early stages of development.Ecdysterone: A steroid hormone that regulates the processes of MOLTING or ecdysis in insects. Ecdysterone is the 20-hydroxylated ECDYSONE.Sense Organs: Specialized organs adapted for the reception of stimuli by the NERVOUS SYSTEM.Embryo, Nonmammalian: The developmental entity of a fertilized egg (ZYGOTE) in animal species other than MAMMALS. For chickens, use CHICK EMBRYO.Photoreceptor Cells, Invertebrate: Specialized cells in the invertebrates that detect and transduce light. They are predominantly rhabdomeric with an array of photosensitive microvilli. Illumination depolarizes invertebrate photoreceptors by stimulating Na+ influx across the plasma membrane.Hedgehog Proteins: A family of intercellular signaling proteins that play and important role in regulating the development of many TISSUES and organs. Their name derives from the observation of a hedgehog-like appearance in DROSOPHILA embryos with genetic mutations that block their action.Mutation: Any detectable and heritable change in the genetic material that causes a change in the GENOTYPE and which is transmitted to daughter cells and to succeeding generations.Phenotype: The outward appearance of the individual. It is the product of interactions between genes, and between the GENOTYPE and the environment.Thorax: The upper part of the trunk between the NECK and the ABDOMEN. It contains the chief organs of the circulatory and respiratory systems. (From Stedman, 25th ed)Transcription Factors: Endogenous substances, usually proteins, which are effective in the initiation, stimulation, or termination of the genetic transcription process.Compound Eye, Arthropod: Light sensory organ in ARTHROPODS consisting of a large number of ommatidia, each functioning as an independent photoreceptor unit.Genes, Lethal: Genes whose loss of function or gain of function MUTATION leads to the death of the carrier prior to maturity. They may be essential genes (GENES, ESSENTIAL) required for viability, or genes which cause a block of function of an essential gene at a time when the essential gene function is required for viability.Homeodomain Proteins: Proteins encoded by homeobox genes (GENES, HOMEOBOX) that exhibit structural similarity to certain prokaryotic and eukaryotic DNA-binding proteins. Homeodomain proteins are involved in the control of gene expression during morphogenesis and development (GENE EXPRESSION REGULATION, DEVELOPMENTAL).Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Temporomandibular Joint Disc: A plate of fibrous tissue that divides the temporomandibular joint into an upper and lower cavity. The disc is attached to the articular capsule and moves forward with the condyle in free opening and protrusion. (Boucher's Clinical Dental Terminology, 4th ed, p92)Armadillo Domain Proteins: A family of proteins that contain several 42-amino acid repeat domains and are homologous to the Drosophila armadillo protein. They bind to other proteins through their armadillo domains and play a variety of roles in the CELL including SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION, regulation of DESMOSOME assembly, and CELL ADHESION.Mosaicism: The occurrence in an individual of two or more cell populations of different chromosomal constitutions, derived from a single ZYGOTE, as opposed to CHIMERISM in which the different cell populations are derived from more than one zygote.Blastodisc: A small whitish spot on the surface of the EGG YOLK where cleavage begins. Upon fertilization the cytoplasm streams from the vegetal pole away from the yolk to the animal pole where cleavage will occur. This germinal area eventually flattens into a layer of cells (BLASTODERM) that covers the yolk completely.Polycomb Repressive Complex 1: A multisubunit polycomb protein complex with affinity for CHROMATIN that contains methylated HISTONE H3. It contains an E3 ubiquitin ligase activity that is specific for HISTONE H2A and works in conjunction with POLYCOMB REPRESSIVE COMPLEX 2 to effect EPIGENETIC REPRESSION.Receptors, Notch: A family of conserved cell surface receptors that contain EPIDERMAL GROWTH FACTOR repeats in their extracellular domain and ANKYRIN repeats in their cytoplasmic domains. The cytoplasmic domain of notch receptors is released upon ligand binding and translocates to the CELL NUCLEUS where it acts as transcription factor.Eye Abnormalities: Congenital absence of or defects in structures of the eye; may also be hereditary.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.DNA-Binding Proteins: Proteins which bind to DNA. The family includes proteins which bind to both double- and single-stranded DNA and also includes specific DNA binding proteins in serum which can be used as markers for malignant diseases.Total Disc Replacement: The replacement of intervertebral discs in the spinal column with artificial devices. The procedure is done in the lumbar or cervical spine to relieve severe pain resulting from INTERVERTEBRAL DISC DEGENERATION.Head: The upper part of the human body, or the front or upper part of the body of an animal, typically separated from the rest of the body by a neck, and containing the brain, mouth, and sense organs.Genes, Homeobox: Genes that encode highly conserved TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS that control positional identity of cells (BODY PATTERNING) and MORPHOGENESIS throughout development. Their sequences contain a 180 nucleotide sequence designated the homeobox, so called because mutations of these genes often results in homeotic transformations, in which one body structure replaces another. The proteins encoded by homeobox genes are called HOMEODOMAIN PROTEINS.Diptera: An order of the class Insecta. Wings, when present, number two and distinguish Diptera from other so-called flies, while the halteres, or reduced hindwings, separate Diptera from other insects with one pair of wings. The order includes the families Calliphoridae, Oestridae, Phoridae, SARCOPHAGIDAE, Scatophagidae, Sciaridae, SIMULIIDAE, Tabanidae, Therevidae, Trypetidae, CERATOPOGONIDAE; CHIRONOMIDAE; CULICIDAE; DROSOPHILIDAE; GLOSSINIDAE; MUSCIDAE; TEPHRITIDAE; and PSYCHODIDAE. The larval form of Diptera species are called maggots (see LARVA).Lumbar Vertebrae: VERTEBRAE in the region of the lower BACK below the THORACIC VERTEBRAE and above the SACRAL VERTEBRAE.Regeneration: The physiological renewal, repair, or replacement of tissue.Antennapedia Homeodomain Protein: Antennapedia homeodomain protein is a homeobox protein involved in limb patterning in ARTHROPODS. Mutations in the gene for the antennapedia homeodomain protein are associated with the conversion of antenna to leg or leg to antenna DROSOPHILA.Membrane Proteins: Proteins which are found in membranes including cellular and intracellular membranes. They consist of two types, peripheral and integral proteins. They include most membrane-associated enzymes, antigenic proteins, transport proteins, and drug, hormone, and lectin receptors.In Situ Hybridization: A technique that localizes specific nucleic acid sequences within intact chromosomes, eukaryotic cells, or bacterial cells through the use of specific nucleic acid-labeled probes.Alleles: Variant forms of the same gene, occupying the same locus on homologous CHROMOSOMES, and governing the variants in production of the same gene product.Repressor Proteins: Proteins which maintain the transcriptional quiescence of specific GENES or OPERONS. Classical repressor proteins are DNA-binding proteins that are normally bound to the OPERATOR REGION of an operon, or the ENHANCER SEQUENCES of a gene until a signal occurs that causes their release.Amino Acid Sequence: The order of amino acids as they occur in a polypeptide chain. This is referred to as the primary structure of proteins. It is of fundamental importance in determining PROTEIN CONFORMATION.Proto-Oncogene Proteins: Products of proto-oncogenes. Normally they do not have oncogenic or transforming properties, but are involved in the regulation or differentiation of cell growth. They often have protein kinase activity.Base Sequence: The sequence of PURINES and PYRIMIDINES in nucleic acids and polynucleotides. It is also called nucleotide sequence.Microscopy, Electron, Scanning: Microscopy in which the object is examined directly by an electron beam scanning the specimen point-by-point. The image is constructed by detecting the products of specimen interactions that are projected above the plane of the sample, such as backscattered electrons. Although SCANNING TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY also scans the specimen point by point with the electron beam, the image is constructed by detecting the electrons, or their interaction products that are transmitted through the sample plane, so that is a form of TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY.Crosses, Genetic: Deliberate breeding of two different individuals that results in offspring that carry part of the genetic material of each parent. The parent organisms must be genetically compatible and may be from different varieties or closely related species.Nuclear Proteins: Proteins found in the nucleus of a cell. Do not confuse with NUCLEOPROTEINS which are proteins conjugated with nucleic acids, that are not necessarily present in the nucleus.Optic Disk: The portion of the optic nerve seen in the fundus with the ophthalmoscope. It is formed by the meeting of all the retinal ganglion cell axons as they enter the optic nerve.Genitalia: The external and internal organs related to reproduction.Enhancer Elements, Genetic: Cis-acting DNA sequences which can increase transcription of genes. Enhancers can usually function in either orientation and at various distances from a promoter.Receptors, Invertebrate Peptide: Cell surface receptors for invertebrate peptide hormones or neuropeptides.Sequence Homology, Amino Acid: The degree of similarity between sequences of amino acids. This information is useful for the analyzing genetic relatedness of proteins and species.Fat Body: A nutritional reservoir of fatty tissue found mainly in insects and amphibians.Diskectomy: Excision, in part or whole, of an INTERVERTEBRAL DISC. The most common indication is disk displacement or herniation. In addition to standard surgical removal, it can be performed by percutaneous diskectomy (DISKECTOMY, PERCUTANEOUS) or by laparoscopic diskectomy, the former being the more common.Cell Differentiation: Progressive restriction of the developmental potential and increasing specialization of function that leads to the formation of specialized cells, tissues, and organs.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Models, Biological: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of biological processes or diseases. For disease models in living animals, DISEASE MODELS, ANIMAL is available. Biological models include the use of mathematical equations, computers, and other electronic equipment.Cloning, Molecular: The insertion of recombinant DNA molecules from prokaryotic and/or eukaryotic sources into a replicating vehicle, such as a plasmid or virus vector, and the introduction of the resultant hybrid molecules into recipient cells without altering the viability of those cells.Blastoderm: A layer of cells lining the fluid-filled cavity (blastocele) of a BLASTULA, usually developed from a fertilized insect, reptilian, or avian egg.Eye ProteinsTranscription, Genetic: The biosynthesis of RNA carried out on a template of DNA. The biosynthesis of DNA from an RNA template is called REVERSE TRANSCRIPTION.Cell Division: The fission of a CELL. It includes CYTOKINESIS, when the CYTOPLASM of a cell is divided, and CELL NUCLEUS DIVISION.Oogenesis: The process of germ cell development in the female from the primordial germ cells through OOGONIA to the mature haploid ova (OVUM).Receptors, Cell Surface: Cell surface proteins that bind signalling molecules external to the cell with high affinity and convert this extracellular event into one or more intracellular signals that alter the behavior of the target cell (From Alberts, Molecular Biology of the Cell, 2nd ed, pp693-5). Cell surface receptors, unlike enzymes, do not chemically alter their ligands.Cell Proliferation: All of the processes involved in increasing CELL NUMBER including CELL DIVISION.Green Fluorescent Proteins: Protein analogs and derivatives of the Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein that emit light (FLUORESCENCE) when excited with ULTRAVIOLET RAYS. They are used in REPORTER GENES in doing GENETIC TECHNIQUES. Numerous mutants have been made to emit other colors or be sensitive to pH.Transgenes: Genes that are introduced into an organism using GENE TRANSFER TECHNIQUES.Nervous System: The entire nerve apparatus, composed of a central part, the brain and spinal cord, and a peripheral part, the cranial and spinal nerves, autonomic ganglia, and plexuses. (Stedman, 26th ed)Nerve Tissue ProteinsRNA Interference: A gene silencing phenomenon whereby specific dsRNAs (RNA, DOUBLE-STRANDED) trigger the degradation of homologous mRNA (RNA, MESSENGER). The specific dsRNAs are processed into SMALL INTERFERING RNA (siRNA) which serves as a guide for cleavage of the homologous mRNA in the RNA-INDUCED SILENCING COMPLEX. DNA METHYLATION may also be triggered during this process.Genetic Complementation Test: A test used to determine whether or not complementation (compensation in the form of dominance) will occur in a cell with a given mutant phenotype when another mutant genome, encoding the same mutant phenotype, is introduced into that cell.Salivary Glands: Glands that secrete SALIVA in the MOUTH. There are three pairs of salivary glands (PAROTID GLAND; SUBLINGUAL GLAND; SUBMANDIBULAR GLAND).Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins: Proteins and peptides that are involved in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION within the cell. Included here are peptides and proteins that regulate the activity of TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS and cellular processes in response to signals from CELL SURFACE RECEPTORS. Intracellular signaling peptide and proteins may be part of an enzymatic signaling cascade or act through binding to and modifying the action of other signaling factors.Organogenesis: Formation of differentiated cells and complicated tissue organization to provide specialized functions.Frizzled Receptors: A family of seven-pass transmembrane cell-surface proteins that combines with LOW DENSITY LIPROTEIN RECEPTOR-RELATED PROTEIN-5 or LOW DENSITY LIPROTEIN RECEPTOR-RELATED PROTEIN-5 to form receptors for WNT PROTEINS. Frizzled receptors often couple with HETEROTRIMERIC G PROTEINS and regulate the WNT SIGNALING PATHWAY.Fibrocartilage: A type of CARTILAGE whose matrix contains large bundles of COLLAGEN TYPE I. Fibrocartilage is typically found in the INTERVERTEBRAL DISK; PUBIC SYMPHYSIS; TIBIAL MENISCI; and articular disks in synovial JOINTS. (From Ross et. al., Histology, 3rd ed., p132,136)Spinal DiseasesLIM-Homeodomain Proteins: A subclass of LIM domain proteins that include an additional centrally-located homeodomain region that binds AT-rich sites on DNA. Many LIM-homeodomain proteins play a role as transcriptional regulators that direct cell fate.Ectoderm: The outer of the three germ layers of an embryo.Manduca: A genus of sphinx or hawk moths of the family Sphingidae. These insects are used in molecular biology studies during all stages of their life cycle.Gene Expression: The phenotypic manifestation of a gene or genes by the processes of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION and GENETIC TRANSLATION.Invertebrate Hormones: Hormones produced by invertebrates, usually insects, mollusks, annelids, and helminths.Embryonic Induction: The complex processes of initiating CELL DIFFERENTIATION in the embryo. The precise regulation by cell interactions leads to diversity of cell types and specific pattern of organization (EMBRYOGENESIS).Cell Polarity: Orientation of intracellular structures especially with respect to the apical and basolateral domains of the plasma membrane. Polarized cells must direct proteins from the Golgi apparatus to the appropriate domain since tight junctions prevent proteins from diffusing between the two domains.Gene Expression Regulation: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control (induction or repression) of gene action at the level of transcription or translation.Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases: A group of enzymes that catalyzes the phosphorylation of serine or threonine residues in proteins, with ATP or other nucleotides as phosphate donors.Diskectomy, Percutaneous: Percutaneous excision of a herniated or displaced INTERVERTEBRAL DISC by posterolateral approach, always remaining outside the spinal canal. Percutaneous nucleotomy was first described by Hijikata in Japan in 1975. In 1985 Onik introduced automated percutaneous nucleotomy which consists in percutaneous aspiration of the nucleus pulposus. It is carried out under local anesthesia, thus reducing the surgical insult and requiring brief hospitalization, often performed on an outpatient basis. It appears to be a well-tolerated alternative to surgical diskectomy and chymopapain nucleolysis.Sex Differentiation: The process in developing sex- or gender-specific tissue, organ, or function after SEX DETERMINATION PROCESSES have set the sex of the GONADS. Major areas of sex differentiation occur in the reproductive tract (GENITALIA) and the brain.Cell Lineage: The developmental history of specific differentiated cell types as traced back to the original STEM CELLS in the embryo.Lac Operon: The genetic unit consisting of three structural genes, an operator and a regulatory gene. The regulatory gene controls the synthesis of the three structural genes: BETA-GALACTOSIDASE and beta-galactoside permease (involved with the metabolism of lactose), and beta-thiogalactoside acetyltransferase.Basic Helix-Loop-Helix Transcription Factors: A family of DNA-binding transcription factors that contain a basic HELIX-LOOP-HELIX MOTIF.Epithelium: One or more layers of EPITHELIAL CELLS, supported by the basal lamina, which covers the inner or outer surfaces of the body.Apoptosis: One of the mechanisms by which CELL DEATH occurs (compare with NECROSIS and AUTOPHAGOCYTOSIS). Apoptosis is the mechanism responsible for the physiological deletion of cells and appears to be intrinsically programmed. It is characterized by distinctive morphologic changes in the nucleus and cytoplasm, chromatin cleavage at regularly spaced sites, and the endonucleolytic cleavage of genomic DNA; (DNA FRAGMENTATION); at internucleosomal sites. This mode of cell death serves as a balance to mitosis in regulating the size of animal tissues and in mediating pathologic processes associated with tumor growth.Microscopy, Fluorescence: Microscopy of specimens stained with fluorescent dye (usually fluorescein isothiocyanate) or of naturally fluorescent materials, which emit light when exposed to ultraviolet or blue light. Immunofluorescence microscopy utilizes antibodies that are labeled with fluorescent dye.HSP40 Heat-Shock Proteins: A family of heat-shock proteins that contain a 70 amino-acid consensus sequence known as the J domain. The J domain of HSP40 heat shock proteins interacts with HSP70 HEAT-SHOCK PROTEINS. HSP40 heat-shock proteins play a role in regulating the ADENOSINE TRIPHOSPHATASES activity of HSP70 heat-shock proteins.Chromosome Mapping: Any method used for determining the location of and relative distances between genes on a chromosome.Trans-Activators: Diffusible gene products that act on homologous or heterologous molecules of viral or cellular DNA to regulate the expression of proteins.DNA Primers: Short sequences (generally about 10 base pairs) of DNA that are complementary to sequences of messenger RNA and allow reverse transcriptases to start copying the adjacent sequences of mRNA. Primers are used extensively in genetic and molecular biology techniques.Genes, Reporter: Genes whose expression is easily detectable and therefore used to study promoter activity at many positions in a target genome. In recombinant DNA technology, these genes may be attached to a promoter region of interest.Models, Genetic: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of genetic processes or phenomena. They include the use of mathematical equations, computers, and other electronic equipment.Intervertebral Disc Chemolysis: The dissolving of the nucleus pulposus, the semi-gelatinous tissue of a displaced INTERVERTEBRAL DISC. It is usually achieved by the direct injection of a proteolytic enzyme, especially CHYMOPAPAIN, into the herniated disc.STAT Transcription Factors: A family of transcription factors containing SH2 DOMAINS that are involved in CYTOKINE-mediated SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION. STAT transcription factors are recruited to the cytoplasmic region of CELL SURFACE RECEPTORS and are activated via PHOSPHORYLATION. Once activated they dimerize and translocate into the CELL NUCLEUS where they influence GENE expression. They play a role in regulating CELL GROWTH PROCESSES and CELL DIFFERENTIATION. STAT transcription factors are inhibited by SUPPRESSOR OF CYTOKINE SIGNALING PROTEINS and PROTEIN INHIBITORS OF ACTIVATED STAT.Cell Cycle: The complex series of phenomena, occurring between the end of one CELL DIVISION and the end of the next, by which cellular material is duplicated and then divided between two daughter cells. The cell cycle includes INTERPHASE, which includes G0 PHASE; G1 PHASE; S PHASE; and G2 PHASE, and CELL DIVISION PHASE.Zinc Fingers: Motifs in DNA- and RNA-binding proteins whose amino acids are folded into a single structural unit around a zinc atom. In the classic zinc finger, one zinc atom is bound to two cysteines and two histidines. In between the cysteines and histidines are 12 residues which form a DNA binding fingertip. By variations in the composition of the sequences in the fingertip and the number and spacing of tandem repeats of the motif, zinc fingers can form a large number of different sequence specific binding sites.Cell Size: The quantity of volume or surface area of CELLS.Cyclin E: A 50-kDa protein that complexes with CYCLIN-DEPENDENT KINASE 2 in the late G1 phase of the cell cycle.Mitosis: A type of CELL NUCLEUS division by means of which the two daughter nuclei normally receive identical complements of the number of CHROMOSOMES of the somatic cells of the species.JNK Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases: A subgroup of mitogen-activated protein kinases that activate TRANSCRIPTION FACTOR AP-1 via the phosphorylation of C-JUN PROTEINS. They are components of intracellular signaling pathways that regulate CELL PROLIFERATION; APOPTOSIS; and CELL DIFFERENTIATION.Homozygote: An individual in which both alleles at a given locus are identical.Electrophoresis, Disc: Electrophoresis in which discontinuities in both the voltage and pH gradients are introduced by using buffers of different composition and pH in the different parts of the gel column. The term 'disc' was originally used as an abbreviation for 'discontinuous' referring to the buffers employed, and does not have anything to do with the shape of the separated zones.Photography: Method of making images on a sensitized surface by exposure to light or other radiant energy.S Phase: Phase of the CELL CYCLE following G1 and preceding G2 when the entire DNA content of the nucleus is replicated. It is achieved by bidirectional replication at multiple sites along each chromosome.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Mutagenesis: Process of generating a genetic MUTATION. It may occur spontaneously or be induced by MUTAGENS.Organ Specificity: Characteristic restricted to a particular organ of the body, such as a cell type, metabolic response or expression of a particular protein or antigen.Recombinant Fusion Proteins: Recombinant proteins produced by the GENETIC TRANSLATION of fused genes formed by the combination of NUCLEIC ACID REGULATORY SEQUENCES of one or more genes with the protein coding sequences of one or more genes.Cadherins: Calcium-dependent cell adhesion proteins. They are important in the formation of ADHERENS JUNCTIONS between cells. Cadherins are classified by their distinct immunological and tissue specificities, either by letters (E- for epithelial, N- for neural, and P- for placental cadherins) or by numbers (cadherin-12 or N-cadherin 2 for brain-cadherin). Cadherins promote cell adhesion via a homophilic mechanism as in the construction of tissues and of the whole animal body.Genes, Recessive: Genes that influence the PHENOTYPE only in the homozygous state.Tissue Distribution: Accumulation of a drug or chemical substance in various organs (including those not relevant to its pharmacologic or therapeutic action). This distribution depends on the blood flow or perfusion rate of the organ, the ability of the drug to penetrate organ membranes, tissue specificity, protein binding. The distribution is usually expressed as tissue to plasma ratios.Cervical Vertebrae: The first seven VERTEBRAE of the SPINAL COLUMN, which correspond to the VERTEBRAE of the NECK.RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.T-Box Domain Proteins: Proteins containing a region of conserved sequence, about 200 amino acids long, which encodes a particular sequence specific DNA binding domain (the T-box domain). These proteins are transcription factors that control developmental pathways. The prototype of this family is the mouse Brachyury (or T) gene product.Conserved Sequence: A sequence of amino acids in a polypeptide or of nucleotides in DNA or RNA that is similar across multiple species. A known set of conserved sequences is represented by a CONSENSUS SEQUENCE. AMINO ACID MOTIFS are often composed of conserved sequences.Proteins: Linear POLYPEPTIDES that are synthesized on RIBOSOMES and may be further modified, crosslinked, cleaved, or assembled into complex proteins with several subunits. The specific sequence of AMINO ACIDS determines the shape the polypeptide will take, during PROTEIN FOLDING, and the function of the protein.DNA, Complementary: Single-stranded complementary DNA synthesized from an RNA template by the action of RNA-dependent DNA polymerase. cDNA (i.e., complementary DNA, not circular DNA, not C-DNA) is used in a variety of molecular cloning experiments as well as serving as a specific hybridization probe.Sciatica: A condition characterized by pain radiating from the back into the buttock and posterior/lateral aspects of the leg. Sciatica may be a manifestation of SCIATIC NEUROPATHY; RADICULOPATHY (involving the SPINAL NERVE ROOTS; L4, L5, S1, or S2, often associated with INTERVERTEBRAL DISK DISPLACEMENT); or lesions of the CAUDA EQUINA.Chromosomes: In a prokaryotic cell or in the nucleus of a eukaryotic cell, a structure consisting of or containing DNA which carries the genetic information essential to the cell. (From Singleton & Sainsbury, Dictionary of Microbiology and Molecular Biology, 2d ed)Epidermis: The external, nonvascular layer of the skin. It is made up, from within outward, of five layers of EPITHELIUM: (1) basal layer (stratum basale epidermidis); (2) spinous layer (stratum spinosum epidermidis); (3) granular layer (stratum granulosum epidermidis); (4) clear layer (stratum lucidum epidermidis); and (5) horny layer (stratum corneum epidermidis).DNA: A deoxyribonucleotide polymer that is the primary genetic material of all cells. Eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms normally contain DNA in a double-stranded state, yet several important biological processes transiently involve single-stranded regions. DNA, which consists of a polysugar-phosphate backbone possessing projections of purines (adenine and guanine) and pyrimidines (thymine and cytosine), forms a double helix that is held together by hydrogen bonds between these purines and pyrimidines (adenine to thymine and guanine to cytosine).Genes, Dominant: Genes that influence the PHENOTYPE both in the homozygous and the heterozygous state.Protein Binding: The process in which substances, either endogenous or exogenous, bind to proteins, peptides, enzymes, protein precursors, or allied compounds. Specific protein-binding measures are often used as assays in diagnostic assessments.Sequence Alignment: The arrangement of two or more amino acid or base sequences from an organism or organisms in such a way as to align areas of the sequences sharing common properties. The degree of relatedness or homology between the sequences is predicted computationally or statistically based on weights assigned to the elements aligned between the sequences. This in turn can serve as a potential indicator of the genetic relatedness between the organisms.Radiculopathy: Disease involving a spinal nerve root (see SPINAL NERVE ROOTS) which may result from compression related to INTERVERTEBRAL DISK DISPLACEMENT; SPINAL CORD INJURIES; SPINAL DISEASES; and other conditions. Clinical manifestations include radicular pain, weakness, and sensory loss referable to structures innervated by the involved nerve root.Phosphoprotein Phosphatases: A group of enzymes removing the SERINE- or THREONINE-bound phosphate groups from a wide range of phosphoproteins, including a number of enzymes which have been phosphorylated under the action of a kinase. (Enzyme Nomenclature, 1992)Epithelial Cells: Cells that line the inner and outer surfaces of the body by forming cellular layers (EPITHELIUM) or masses. Epithelial cells lining the SKIN; the MOUTH; the NOSE; and the ANAL CANAL derive from ectoderm; those lining the RESPIRATORY SYSTEM and the DIGESTIVE SYSTEM derive from endoderm; others (CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM and LYMPHATIC SYSTEM) derive from mesoderm. Epithelial cells can be classified mainly by cell shape and function into squamous, glandular and transitional epithelial cells.Optic Nerve Diseases: Conditions which produce injury or dysfunction of the second cranial or optic nerve, which is generally considered a component of the central nervous system. Damage to optic nerve fibers may occur at or near their origin in the retina, at the optic disk, or in the nerve, optic chiasm, optic tract, or lateral geniculate nuclei. Clinical manifestations may include decreased visual acuity and contrast sensitivity, impaired color vision, and an afferent pupillary defect.Cell Communication: Any of several ways in which living cells of an organism communicate with one another, whether by direct contact between cells or by means of chemical signals carried by neurotransmitter substances, hormones, and cyclic AMP.beta-Galactosidase: A group of enzymes that catalyzes the hydrolysis of terminal, non-reducing beta-D-galactose residues in beta-galactosides. Deficiency of beta-Galactosidase A1 may cause GANGLIOSIDOSIS, GM1.Luminescent Proteins: Proteins which are involved in the phenomenon of light emission in living systems. Included are the "enzymatic" and "non-enzymatic" types of system with or without the presence of oxygen or co-factors.Clone Cells: A group of genetically identical cells all descended from a single common ancestral cell by mitosis in eukaryotes or by binary fission in prokaryotes. Clone cells also include populations of recombinant DNA molecules all carrying the same inserted sequence. (From King & Stansfield, Dictionary of Genetics, 4th ed)Helix-Loop-Helix Motifs: Recurring supersecondary structures characterized by 20 amino acids folding into two alpha helices connected by a non-helical "loop" segment. They are found in many sequence-specific DNA-BINDING PROTEINS and in CALCIUM-BINDING PROTEINS.Cell Cycle Proteins: Proteins that control the CELL DIVISION CYCLE. This family of proteins includes a wide variety of classes, including CYCLIN-DEPENDENT KINASES, mitogen-activated kinases, CYCLINS, and PHOSPHOPROTEIN PHOSPHATASES as well as their putative substrates such as chromatin-associated proteins, CYTOSKELETAL PROTEINS, and TRANSCRIPTION FACTORS.Microscopy, Electron: Microscopy using an electron beam, instead of light, to visualize the sample, thereby allowing much greater magnification. The interactions of ELECTRONS with specimens are used to provide information about the fine structure of that specimen. In TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY the reactions of the electrons that are transmitted through the specimen are imaged. In SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY an electron beam falls at a non-normal angle on the specimen and the image is derived from the reactions occurring above the plane of the specimen.Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins: Regulatory proteins and peptides that are signaling molecules involved in the process of PARACRINE COMMUNICATION. They are generally considered factors that are expressed by one cell and are responded to by receptors on another nearby cell. They are distinguished from HORMONES in that their actions are local rather than distal.Fluorescent Antibody Technique: Test for tissue antigen using either a direct method, by conjugation of antibody with fluorescent dye (FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY TECHNIQUE, DIRECT) or an indirect method, by formation of antigen-antibody complex which is then labeled with fluorescein-conjugated anti-immunoglobulin antibody (FLUORESCENT ANTIBODY TECHNIQUE, INDIRECT). The tissue is then examined by fluorescence microscopy.Spinal Fusion: Operative immobilization or ankylosis of two or more vertebrae by fusion of the vertebral bodies with a short bone graft or often with diskectomy or laminectomy. (From Blauvelt & Nelson, A Manual of Orthopaedic Terminology, 5th ed, p236; Dorland, 28th ed)Genes, Tumor Suppressor: Genes that inhibit expression of the tumorigenic phenotype. They are normally involved in holding cellular growth in check. When tumor suppressor genes are inactivated or lost, a barrier to normal proliferation is removed and unregulated growth is possible.Tumor Suppressor Proteins: Proteins that are normally involved in holding cellular growth in check. Deficiencies or abnormalities in these proteins may lead to unregulated cell growth and tumor development.Tomography: Imaging methods that result in sharp images of objects located on a chosen plane and blurred images located above or below the plane.Receptor, Epidermal Growth Factor: A cell surface receptor involved in regulation of cell growth and differentiation. It is specific for EPIDERMAL GROWTH FACTOR and EGF-related peptides including TRANSFORMING GROWTH FACTOR ALPHA; AMPHIREGULIN; and HEPARIN-BINDING EGF-LIKE GROWTH FACTOR. The binding of ligand to the receptor causes activation of its intrinsic tyrosine kinase activity and rapid internalization of the receptor-ligand complex into the cell.Retina: The ten-layered nervous tissue membrane of the eye. It is continuous with the OPTIC NERVE and receives images of external objects and transmits visual impulses to the brain. Its outer surface is in contact with the CHOROID and the inner surface with the VITREOUS BODY. The outer-most layer is pigmented, whereas the inner nine layers are transparent.Inhibitor of Apoptosis Proteins: A conserved class of proteins that control APOPTOSIS in both VERTEBRATES and INVERTEBRATES. IAP proteins interact with and inhibit CASPASES, and they function as ANTI-APOPTOTIC PROTEINS. The protein class is defined by an approximately 80-amino acid motif called the baculoviral inhibitor of apoptosis repeat.DNA Transposable Elements: Discrete segments of DNA which can excise and reintegrate to another site in the genome. Most are inactive, i.e., have not been found to exist outside the integrated state. DNA transposable elements include bacterial IS (insertion sequence) elements, Tn elements, the maize controlling elements Ac and Ds, Drosophila P, gypsy, and pogo elements, the human Tigger elements and the Tc and mariner elements which are found throughout the animal kingdom.Central Nervous System: The main information-processing organs of the nervous system, consisting of the brain, spinal cord, and meninges.Ophthalmoscopy: Examination of the interior of the eye with an ophthalmoscope.Low Back Pain: Acute or chronic pain in the lumbar or sacral regions, which may be associated with musculo-ligamentous SPRAINS AND STRAINS; INTERVERTEBRAL DISK DISPLACEMENT; and other conditions.Multigene Family: A set of genes descended by duplication and variation from some ancestral gene. Such genes may be clustered together on the same chromosome or dispersed on different chromosomes. Examples of multigene families include those that encode the hemoglobins, immunoglobulins, histocompatibility antigens, actins, tubulins, keratins, collagens, heat shock proteins, salivary glue proteins, chorion proteins, cuticle proteins, yolk proteins, and phaseolins, as well as histones, ribosomal RNA, and transfer RNA genes. The latter three are examples of reiterated genes, where hundreds of identical genes are present in a tandem array. (King & Stanfield, A Dictionary of Genetics, 4th ed)Microscopy, Confocal: A light microscopic technique in which only a small spot is illuminated and observed at a time. An image is constructed through point-by-point scanning of the field in this manner. Light sources may be conventional or laser, and fluorescence or transmitted observations are possible.Gene Silencing: Interruption or suppression of the expression of a gene at transcriptional or translational levels.Heterochromatin: The portion of chromosome material that remains condensed and is transcriptionally inactive during INTERPHASE.Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled: The largest family of cell surface receptors involved in SIGNAL TRANSDUCTION. They share a common structure and signal through HETEROTRIMERIC G-PROTEINS.Carrier Proteins: Transport proteins that carry specific substances in the blood or across cell membranes.Genotype: The genetic constitution of the individual, comprising the ALLELES present at each GENETIC LOCUS.Promoter Regions, Genetic: DNA sequences which are recognized (directly or indirectly) and bound by a DNA-dependent RNA polymerase during the initiation of transcription. Highly conserved sequences within the promoter include the Pribnow box in bacteria and the TATA BOX in eukaryotes.Protein Structure, Tertiary: The level of protein structure in which combinations of secondary protein structures (alpha helices, beta sheets, loop regions, and motifs) pack together to form folded shapes called domains. Disulfide bridges between cysteines in two different parts of the polypeptide chain along with other interactions between the chains play a role in the formation and stabilization of tertiary structure. Small proteins usually consist of only one domain but larger proteins may contain a number of domains connected by segments of polypeptide chain which lack regular secondary structure.Cytoskeleton: The network of filaments, tubules, and interconnecting filamentous bridges which give shape, structure, and organization to the cytoplasm.Cell Survival: The span of viability of a cell characterized by the capacity to perform certain functions such as metabolism, growth, reproduction, some form of responsiveness, and adaptability.Glaucoma: An ocular disease, occurring in many forms, having as its primary characteristics an unstable or a sustained increase in the intraocular pressure which the eye cannot withstand without damage to its structure or impairment of its function. The consequences of the increased pressure may be manifested in a variety of symptoms, depending upon type and severity, such as excavation of the optic disk, hardness of the eyeball, corneal anesthesia, reduced visual acuity, seeing of colored halos around lights, disturbed dark adaptation, visual field defects, and headaches. (Dictionary of Visual Science, 4th ed)Genes: A category of nucleic acid sequences that function as units of heredity and which code for the basic instructions for the development, reproduction, and maintenance of organisms.Papilledema: Swelling of the OPTIC DISK, usually in association with increased intracranial pressure, characterized by hyperemia, blurring of the disk margins, microhemorrhages, blind spot enlargement, and engorgement of retinal veins. Chronic papilledema may cause OPTIC ATROPHY and visual loss. (Miller et al., Clinical Neuro-Ophthalmology, 4th ed, p175)Compressive Strength: The maximum compression a material can withstand without failure. (From McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 5th ed, p427)Genes, Regulator: Genes which regulate or circumscribe the activity of other genes; specifically, genes which code for PROTEINS or RNAs which have GENE EXPRESSION REGULATION functions.Transforming Growth Factor beta: A factor synthesized in a wide variety of tissues. It acts synergistically with TGF-alpha in inducing phenotypic transformation and can also act as a negative autocrine growth factor. TGF-beta has a potential role in embryonal development, cellular differentiation, hormone secretion, and immune function. TGF-beta is found mostly as homodimer forms of separate gene products TGF-beta1, TGF-beta2 or TGF-beta3. Heterodimers composed of TGF-beta1 and 2 (TGF-beta1.2) or of TGF-beta2 and 3 (TGF-beta2.3) have been isolated. The TGF-beta proteins are synthesized as precursor proteins.Gene Expression Profiling: The determination of the pattern of genes expressed at the level of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION, under specific circumstances or in a specific cell.Spinal Osteophytosis: Outgrowth of immature bony processes or bone spurs (OSTEOPHYTE) from the VERTEBRAE, reflecting the presence of degenerative disease and calcification. It commonly occurs in cervical and lumbar SPONDYLOSIS.Cell Death: The termination of the cell's ability to carry out vital functions such as metabolism, growth, reproduction, responsiveness, and adaptability.