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The process of polytenization plays a crucial role in Drosophila development, and most of the larval tissues are polytene. By analyzing the pattern of DNA replication in embryos pulse-labeled with BrdU, we show that many larval tissues undergo a transition to begin becoming polytene late in embryogenesis. Our results demonstrate that in these larval tissues polyteny results from a modified cell cycle, the endo cell cycle, in which there is only an S (synthesis) phase and a G (gap) phase. A keypmid:1935703 fatcat:rd5fdcv22rarbjstbhddhp7nua