Proposal Fly Nomenclature Changes

Kevin Cook kcook at
Mon Jul 14 15:15:18 EST 2003

Dear Colleagues,

The Fly Board appointed a committee consisting of the two of us, Scott 
Hawley and Kevin Cook, to consider issues concerning Drosophila 
nomenclature.  We were charged with evaluating troublesome aspects of 
nomenclature and offering suggestions to simplify and rationalize the 
naming of genetic elements.  In particular, we were asked to examine the 
practice of capitalizing gene names.  While we may bring other 
nomenclatural issues up for discussion by the Drosophila community in the 
future, we would like to focus now on capitalized gene names.

As we announced at the Fly Meeting, we are distributing a proposal for 
public comment.  It may be viewed at Please examine the document and 
send your comments to Scott Hawley (RSH at and/or Kevin 
Cook (kcook at  We would like to know what you think about 
the issue of capitalization in general and what you think about proposed 
changes to symbols for specific genes.

We will periodically compile comments and post them on-line at the URL 
above.  Please feel free to respond to posted comments.  If you do not want 
your comments posted publicly or if you would like your comments posted 
anonymously, please tell us in your correspondence.

We hope we can reach some consensus about this issue.  If changes are to be 
implemented, we will make an announcement in the Fall.

Best regards,
Scott Hawley and Kevin Cook

Kevin Cook, Ph.D.               Bloomington Drosophila Stock Center
Department of Biology 
Jordan Hall 142
Indiana University              812-855-5782
1001 E. Third St.               812-855-2577 (fax)
Bloomington, IN  47405-3700     kcook at 


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