Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Prof. Clarissa Cheney

Reader 2

Prof. Jennifer Armstrong


This experimental thesis serves to elucidate the relationship and contributions between two genes in Drosophila melanogaster, and ultimately observe consequences in developmental phenotype. The Naa20 gene is known to play an integral role in post-translational modifications in Drosophila melanogaster within the NatB enzymatic complex. A CRISPR-induced mutation was previously identified in this gene in our lab at Pomona College, making it the first mutation within Naa20 in fly literature. Confirming and extending our knowledge of this mutation is important as the data is novel yet incomplete. Furthermore, understanding the developmental phenotype and impact of this mutation on fly development is essential. We hope to elucidate the role of Naa20 outside its known N-terminal acetylation context, as well as interactions with the NatB non-catalytic subunit, psidin. The goal of this study was to deduce whether psidin, the non-catalytic subunit sharing the same NatB complex with the catalytic Naa20, have independent roles or dependent roles given their overlapping function in N-terminal acetylation. While previous predictions suggested that the mutations would be homozygous lethal, one CRISPR isolate was found to be homozygous viable, therefore presenting a unique opportunity for further research. This leads us to investigate the specific post translational modification (PTM) affected by this mutation and its impact on fly development. We hypothesized that two NatB subunits are dependent and will show similar developmental mutant phenotypes due to their overlapping N-terminal acetylation role.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.