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Drosophila melanogaster cell lines are an important resource for a range of studies spanning genomics, molecular genetics, and cell biology. Amongst these valuable lines are Kc167 (Kc) and Schneider 2 (S2) cells, which were originally isolated in the late 1960s from embryonic sources and have been used extensively to investigate a broad spectrum of biological activities including cell-cell signaling and immune system function. Whole-genome tiling microarray analysis of total RNA from these two cell types was performed as part of the modENCODE project over a decade ago and revealed that they share a number of gene expression features. Here, we expand on these earlier studies by using deep-coverage RNA-sequencing approaches to investigate the transcriptional profile in Kc and S2 cells in detail. Comparison of the transcriptomes reveals that ∼75% of the 13,919 annotated genes are expressed at a detectable level in at least one of the cell lines, with the majority of these genes expressed at high levels in both cell lines. Despite the overall similarity of the transcriptional landscape in the two cell types, 2,588 differentially expressed genes are identified. Many of the genes with the largest fold change are known only by their "CG" designations, indicating that the molecular control of Kc and S2 cell identity may be regulated in part by a cohort of relatively uncharacterized genes. Our data also indicate that both cell lines have distinct hemocyte-like identities, but share active signaling pathways and express a number of genes in the network responsible for dorsal-ventral patterning of the early embryo. © The Author(s) 2023. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Genetics Society of America.

Publication Title

G3: Genes, Genomes, Genetics

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Drosophila, cell lines, embryo, Kc, S2, transcriptome

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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Biology Commons



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