Draper, the Drosophila melanogaster homolog of the Ced-1 protein of Caenorhabditis elegans, is a cell-surface receptor required for the recognition and engulfment of apoptotic cells, glial clearance of axon fragments and dendritic pruning, and salivary gland autophagy. To further elucidate mechanisms of Draper signaling, we screened chromosomal deficiencies to identify loci that dominantly modify the phenotype of overexpression of Draper isoform II (suppressed differentiation of the posterior crossvein in the wing). We found evidence for 43 genetic modifiers of Draper II. Twenty-four of the 37 suppressor loci and 3 of the 6 enhancer loci were identified. An additional 5 suppressors and 2 enhancers were identified among mutations in functionally related genes. These studies reveal positive contributions to Drpr signaling for the Jun N-terminal Kinase pathway, supported by genetic interactions with hemipterous, basket, jun, and puckered, and for cytoskeleton regulation as indicated by genetic interactions with rac1, rac2, RhoA, myoblast city, Wiskcott–Aldrich syndrome protein, and the formin CG32138, and for yorkie and expanded. These findings indicate that Jun N-terminal Kinase activation and cytoskeletal remodeling collaborate in Draper signaling. Relationships between Draper signaling and Decapentaplegic signaling, insulin signaling, Salvador/Warts/Hippo signaling, apical-basal cell polarity, and cellular responses to mechanical forces are also discussed.
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