Gene Symbol: MtnB
Description: Metallothionein B
Alias: CG4312, Dmel\CG4312, DrosMto, MTN, MTO, MtnA, Mto, mtnB, metallothionein B, CG4312-PA, CG4312-PB, CG4312-PC, MtnB-PA, MtnB-PB, MtnB-PC, metallothionein
Species: fruit fly

Top Publications

  1. Selvaraj A, Balamurugan K, Yepiskoposyan H, Zhou H, Egli D, Georgiev O, et al. Metal-responsive transcription factor (MTF-1) handles both extremes, copper load and copper starvation, by activating different genes. Genes Dev. 2005;19:891-6 pubmed
    From insects to mammals, metallothionein genes are induced in response to heavy metal load by the transcription factor MTF-1, which binds to short DNA sequence motifs, termed metal response elements (MREs)...
  2. Zhang B, Egli D, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. The Drosophila homolog of mammalian zinc finger factor MTF-1 activates transcription in response to heavy metals. Mol Cell Biol. 2001;21:4505-14 pubmed
    ..These data underline an important role for dMTF-1 in MT gene regulation and thus heavy metal homeostasis. ..
  3. Domenech J, Palacios O, Villarreal L, González Duarte P, Capdevila M, Atrian S. MTO: the second member of a Drosophila dual copper-thionein system. FEBS Lett. 2003;533:72-8 pubmed
    Drosophila MTO metal binding features were analyzed for comparison with MTN, the paralogous Drosophila metallothionein, and to classify MTO as either zinc- or copper-thionein...
  4. Saini N, Schaffner W. Zinc supplement greatly improves the condition of parkin mutant Drosophila. Biol Chem. 2010;391:513-8 pubmed publisher
  5. Southon A, Burke R, Norgate M, Batterham P, Camakaris J. Copper homoeostasis in Drosophila melanogaster S2 cells. Biochem J. 2004;383:303-9 pubmed
    ..of yeast COX17), and SCO1 and SCO2, did not significantly respond transcriptionally to increased Cu levels, whereas MtnA, MtnB and MtnD (Drosophila orthologues of human metallothioneins) were up-regulated by Cu in a time- and dose-..
  6. Valls M, Bofill R, Romero Isart N, Gonzalez Duarte R, Abian J, Carrascal M, et al. Drosophila MTN: a metazoan copper-thionein related to fungal forms. FEBS Lett. 2000;467:189-94 pubmed
    Two Drosophila metallothioneins (MT) have been reported: MTN, a 40 residue peptide including 10 Cys, and MTO, a 43 residue peptide including 12 Cys...
  7. Wang X, Wu Y, Zhou B. Dietary zinc absorption is mediated by ZnT1 in Drosophila melanogaster. FASEB J. 2009;23:2650-61 pubmed publisher
    ..This study will be helpful in understanding the fundamental process of acquiring dietary zinc in higher eukaryotes. ..
  8. Egli D, Yepiskoposyan H, Selvaraj A, Balamurugan K, Rajaram R, Simons A, et al. A family knockout of all four Drosophila metallothioneins reveals a central role in copper homeostasis and detoxification. Mol Cell Biol. 2006;26:2286-96 pubmed
    ..Here, we report the generation of a metallothionein gene family knockout in Drosophila melanogaster by targeted disruption of all four genes (MtnA to -D)...
  9. Balamurugan K, Egli D, Selvaraj A, Zhang B, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. Metal-responsive transcription factor (MTF-1) and heavy metal stress response in Drosophila and mammalian cells: a functional comparison. Biol Chem. 2004;385:597-603 pubmed
    ..Finally, a clear difference was revealed in the response to mercury, a highly toxic heavy metal: metallothionein-type promoters respond poorly, if at all, to Hg2+ in mammalian cells but strongly in Drosophila, and this ..

More Information


  1. Lye J, Richards C, Dechen K, Paterson D, de Jonge M, Howard D, et al. Systematic functional characterization of putative zinc transport genes and identification of zinc toxicosis phenotypes in Drosophila melanogaster. J Exp Biol. 2012;215:3254-65 pubmed publisher
    ..Our findings show that a genetically based zinc toxicosis situation can be therapeutically treated or exacerbated by modifications to the diet, providing a sensitized background for future, more detailed studies of Zip/ZnT function. ..
  2. Mokdad R, Debec A, Wegnez M. Metallothionein genes in Drosophila melanogaster constitute a dual system. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1987;84:2658-62 pubmed
    We have selected a metallothionein (MT) cDNA clone from a cadmium-resistant Drosophila melanogaster cell line...
  3. Silar P, Theodore L, Mokdad R, Erraiss N, Cadic A, Wegnez M. Metallothionein Mto gene of Drosophila melanogaster: structure and regulation. J Mol Biol. 1990;215:217-24 pubmed
    We report the sequence of the Mto gene, one of the two known metallothionein genes of Drosophila melanogaster, and compare its structure with that of the other metallothionein gene, Mtn...
  4. Egli D, Domènech J, Selvaraj A, Balamurugan K, Hua H, Capdevila M, et al. The four members of the Drosophila metallothionein family exhibit distinct yet overlapping roles in heavy metal homeostasis and detoxification. Genes Cells. 2006;11:647-58 pubmed
    Four metallothionein genes are present in the Drosophila melanogaster genome, designated MtnA, MtnB, MtnC, MtnD, all of which are transcriptionally induced by heavy metals through the same metal-responsive transcription factor, MTF-1...
  5. Atanesyan L, Günther V, Celniker S, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. Characterization of MtnE, the fifth metallothionein member in Drosophila. J Biol Inorg Chem. 2011;16:1047-56 pubmed publisher
    ..Here we characterize a new fifth member of Drosophila MT gene family, coding for metallothionein E (MtnE). The MtnE transcription unit is located head-to-head with the one of MtnD...
  6. Dallinger R. Metallothionein research in terrestrial invertebrates: synopsis and perspectives. Comp Biochem Physiol C Pharmacol Toxicol Endocrinol. 1996;113:125-33 pubmed
    While most of metallothionein research during the past years has been carried out on mammals or vertebrates, only relatively few studies have been directed towards invertebrates...
  7. Pérez Rafael S, Kurz A, Guirola M, Capdevila M, Palacios O, Atrian S. Is MtnE, the fifth Drosophila metallothionein, functionally distinct from the other members of this polymorphic protein family?. Metallomics. 2012;4:342-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Until recently, the Drosophila MT system was assumed to be composed of 4 isoforms (MtnA, MtnB, MtnC and MtnD), all of them responsive to heavy metal load through the dMTF1 transcription factor...
  8. Günther V, Waldvogel D, Nosswitz M, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. Dissection of Drosophila MTF-1 reveals a domain for differential target gene activation upon copper overload vs. copper starvation. Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2012;44:404-11 pubmed publisher
    ..It mediates protection against heavy metal load by activating the expression of metallothionein and other genes...
  9. Pennington K, Marr S, Chirn G, Marr M. Holo-TFIID controls the magnitude of a transcription burst and fine-tuning of transcription. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013;110:7678-83 pubmed publisher
    ..from Drosophila cells and determined the consequences on metal-induced transcription at an inducible gene, metallothionein B. We observe a marked increase in the levels of both the mature message and pre-mRNA in TAF1-depleted cells...
  10. Hua H, Günther V, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. Distorted copper homeostasis with decreased sensitivity to cisplatin upon chaperone Atox1 deletion in Drosophila. Biometals. 2011;24:445-53 pubmed publisher
    ..At the same time, intestinal metallothionein is upregulated...
  11. Xiao G, Fan Q, Wang X, Zhou B. Huntington disease arises from a combinatory toxicity of polyglutamine and copper binding. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013;110:14995-5000 pubmed publisher
    ..The existence of these two parallel pathways converging into Htt toxicity also suggests that an ideal HD therapy would be a multipronged approach that takes both these actions into consideration. ..
  12. Qiang W, Huang Y, Wan Z, Zhou B. Metal-metal interaction mediates the iron induction of Drosophila MtnB. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2017;487:646-652 pubmed publisher
    b>Metallothionein (MT) protein families are a class of small and universal proteins rich in cysteine residues. They are synthesized in response to heavy metal stresses to sequester the toxic ions by metal-thiolate bridges...
  13. Lange B, Langley C, Stephan W. Molecular evolution of Drosophila metallothionein genes. Genetics. 1990;126:921-32 pubmed
    The metallothionein genes of Drosophila melanogaster, Mtn and Mto, may play an important role in heavy metal detoxification...
  14. Norgate M, Southon A, Zou S, Zhan M, Sun Y, Batterham P, et al. Copper homeostasis gene discovery in Drosophila melanogaster. Biometals. 2007;20:683-97 pubmed
    ..Building on this information, there is great potential for the further use of Drosophila for copper homeostasis gene discovery. ..
  15. Balamurugan K, Egli D, Hua H, Rajaram R, Seisenbacher G, Georgiev O, et al. Copper homeostasis in Drosophila by complex interplay of import, storage and behavioral avoidance. EMBO J. 2007;26:1035-44 pubmed induces the Ctr1B copper importer gene, whereas at high copper concentrations, it mainly induces the metallothionein genes...
  16. Filipiak M, Tylko G, Pyza E. Zinc induces caspase-dependent mitochondrial pathway of the programmed cell death in haemocytes of Drosophila melanogaster. Biometals. 2012;25:507-16 pubmed publisher
    ..The obtained results showed that rapid increase of [Zn(2+)]( i ) in the cytoplasm up-regulates metallothionein MtnB but not MtnA gene expression in cells treated with Zn(2+) in both concentrations...
  17. Bonneton F, Wegnez M. Developmental variability of metallothionein Mtn gene expression in the species of the Drosophila melanogaster subgroup. Dev Genet. 1995;16:253-63 pubmed publisher
    Developmental expression of the Drosophila melanogaster metallothionein Mtn gene has been analysed...
  18. Guirola M, Naranjo Y, Capdevila M, Atrian S. Comparative genomics analysis of metallothioneins in twelve Drosophila species. J Inorg Biochem. 2011;105:1050-9 pubmed publisher
    ..The MTs polymorphism pattern is essentially the same for the 12 Drosophila species. Invariably, a MtnA form and an MtnB-cluster, comprising the MtnB-to-MtnE forms in tandem array, are observed...
  19. Capdevila M, Palacios O, Atrian S. The zn- or cu-thionein character of a metallothionein determines its metal load when synthesized in physiological (metal-unsupplemented) conditions. Bioinorg Chem Appl. 2010;:541829 pubmed publisher
    ..The four MTs are two Drosophila (MtnA and MtnB), one yeast (Crs5), and one mouse (mMT1) metallothionein isoforms...
  20. Torreggiani A, Domènech J, Atrian S, Capdevila M, Tinti A. Raman study of in vivo synthesized Zn(II)-metallothionein complexes: structural insight into metal clusters and protein folding. Biopolymers. 2008;89:1114-24 pubmed publisher
  21. Tio L, Pagani M, Atrian S. Drosophila proteins interacting with metallothioneins: a metal-dependent recognition. Proteomics. 2009;9:2568-77 pubmed publisher
    ..In the present work, we have detected that the two major D. melanogaster isoforms (MtnA and MtnB) interact with the peroxiredoxin (Prx) encoded by the gene Jafrac1, both in a clear metal-dependent ..
  22. Bonneton F, Theodore L, Silar P, Maroni G, Wegnez M. Response of Drosophila metallothionein promoters to metallic, heat shock and oxidative stresses. FEBS Lett. 1996;380:33-8 pubmed
    The metallothionein system in Drosophila melanogaster is composed of two genes, Mtn and Mto. In order to compare the induction properties of these genes, we transformed D...
  23. Sims H, Chirn G, Marr M. Single nucleotide in the MTF-1 binding site can determine metal-specific transcription activation. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012;109:16516-21 pubmed publisher
    ..We also find that the type of binding site chosen is an important component of the capability to induce the metal-specific transcription activation. ..
  24. Van Hiel M, Breugelmans B, Pagel C, Williams A, Varan A, Burke R, et al. The ovicidal, larvacidal and adulticidal properties of 5,5'-dimethyl-2,2'-bipyridyl against Drosophila melanogaster. PLoS ONE. 2012;7:e49961 pubmed publisher
    ..29 mM was recorded following the ingestion of the compound. The capacity of Ha44 to act on all stages of the life-cycle and potentially via a range of targets suggests that target site resistance is unlikely to evolve. ..
  25. Qin Q, Wang X, Zhou B. Functional studies of Drosophila zinc transporters reveal the mechanism for dietary zinc absorption and regulation. BMC Biol. 2013;11:101 pubmed publisher
    ..The knowledge gained will act as a reference for future mammalian studies, and also enable an appreciation of this important process from an evolutionary perspective. ..
  26. Soriano S, Calap Quintana P, Llorens J, Al Ramahi I, Gutierrez L, Martínez Sebastián M, et al. Metal Homeostasis Regulators Suppress FRDA Phenotypes in a Drosophila Model of the Disease. PLoS ONE. 2016;11:e0159209 pubmed publisher
    ..Taken together, these results demonstrate that the metal dysregulation in FRDA includes other metals besides iron, therefore providing a new set of potential therapeutic targets. ..
  27. Kappeler M, Kranz E, Woolcock K, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. Drosophila bloom helicase maintains genome integrity by inhibiting recombination between divergent DNA sequences. Nucleic Acids Res. 2008;36:6907-17 pubmed publisher
    ..Unexpectedly, distinct from its function in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the mismatch repair factor Msh2 encoded by spel1 does not suppress homeologous SSA in Drosophila. ..
  28. Durliat M, Bonneton F, Boissonneau E, Andre M, Wegnez M. Expression of metallothionein genes during the post-embryonic development of Drosophila melanogaster. Biometals. 1995;8:339-51 pubmed
    Expression of the two Drosophila melanogaster metallothionein genes, Mtn and Mto, has been analyzed by in situ hybridization during post-embryonic development...
  29. Silar P, Wegnez M. Expression of the Drosophila melanogaster metallothionein genes in yeast. FEBS Lett. 1990;269:273-6 pubmed
    The metallothionein system in Drosophila melanogaster is composed of two genes, Mto and Mtn, that code for distinctly different proteins...
  30. Saini N, Georgiev O, Schaffner W. The parkin mutant phenotype in the fly is largely rescued by metal-responsive transcription factor (MTF-1). Mol Cell Biol. 2011;31:2151-61 pubmed publisher
    ..Our findings also raise the possibility that MTF-1 gene polymorphisms in humans could affect the severity of Parkinson's disease. ..
  31. Binks T, Lye J, Camakaris J, Burke R. Tissue-specific interplay between copper uptake and efflux in Drosophila. J Biol Inorg Chem. 2010;15:621-8 pubmed publisher
    ..Furthermore, Ctr1A and Ctr1B show a dramatic synergistic interaction, indicating their relationship is more complicated than a simply additive one and that they may in fact act cooperatively for optimal copper import. ..