HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Parasite's sperm-encryption keeps species apart

Scientists have found the most convincing evidence yet that a parasite can contribute to splitting a species in two, thanks to a phenomenon where a wasps damaged sperm can be rescued or fixed only by mating with particular females. A bacterium called Wolbachia prevents the successful development of embryos in matings between two very closely related wasp species that could otherwise produce viable offspring. In the February 8th issue of Nature, University of Rochester researchers show that the bacteriums species-splitting effect came before any other in the wasps, strongly suggesting that the parasite accelerated the natural evolution of the insect. The research was conducted by two graduate students, Seth Bordenstein and Patrick OHara, and led by John Werren, professor of biology.

Wolbachia propagates itself in an unusual manner: Instead of merely helping its host compete against non-infected hosts as many parasites do, Wolbachia actively seeks to eliminate non-infected hosts by stopping them from reproducing. To do this, the parasite alters the sperm of its male host, rendering it infertile when paired with an uninfected female. If, however, the male mates with an infected female, the damaged reproductive cells are rescued by the females parasite. Its as if the bacterium encodes the sperm cell, rendering it useless unless it encounters the de-coding bacterium from another infected wasp. The result is that infected males can only impregnate other infected females, not uninfected ones, and makes it difficult for uninfected females to find a compatible mate.

The trickery is part of a wider system that assures that as many wasps as possible will pass Wolbachia on to the next generation. Infected males can have offspring only with infected females, and infected females automatically pass the infection on to all their offspring. The only possibility for producing uninfected offspring is for two uninfected wasps to mate.

This is the best evidence o
'"/>

Contact: Jonathan Sherwood
jsherwood@admin.rochester.edu
716-273-4726
University of Rochester
7-Feb-2001


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Parasites enzyme structure helps address a public health issue
2. Genetically-engineered marathon mouse keeps on running
3. Coordinating power of circadian rhythms keeps estrus and pregnancy on track
4. A gene that keeps species apart
5. Protein keeps cold fish from becoming frozen flounder, new study shows
6. An apple a day keeps the doctor away . . . but so may a cigarette
7. An aspirin a day keeps Staphylococcus aureus away
8. Protein discovered that keeps hemoglobin in balance
9. What keeps the nervous system intact?
10. Cannibalism in the North Atlantic: Scripps researcher finds crustacean species keeps population in check by eating its young
11. Scientists determine how chemistry keeps weird worms "out of hot water" at steaming deep-sea vents

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/5/2017)... NEW YORK , April 5, 2017 ... security, is announcing that the server component of the ... is known for providing the end-to-end security architecture that ... customers. HYPR has already secured over 15 ... system makers including manufacturers of connected home product suites ...
(Date:4/3/2017)...  Data captured by IsoCode, IsoPlexis Corporation,s ... statistically significant association between the potency of ... objective response of cancer patients post-treatment. The ... cancer patients will respond to CAR-T cell ... to improve both pre-infusion potency testing and cell ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... NEW YORK , March 30, 2017 ... by type (physiological and behavioral), by technology (fingerprint, AFIS, ... recognition, voice recognition, and others), by end use industry ... travel and immigration, financial and banking, and others), and ... Europe , Asia Pacific ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... -- International research firm Parks Associates announced today that ... TMA 2017 Annual Meeting , October 11 in Scottsdale, Arizona ... market and how smart safety and security products impact the competitive landscape. ... Parks Associates: Smart Home Devices: Main Purchase ... "The residential security market has experienced continued growth, ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... USDM Life ... for the life sciences and healthcare industries, announces a presentation by Subbu Viswanathan ... The presentation, “Automating GxP Validation for Agile Cloud Platforms,” will present a revolutionary ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... Oct. 9, 2017  BioTech Holdings announced today ... which its ProCell stem cell therapy prevents limb ... The Company, demonstrated that treatment with ProCell resulted ... saved as compared to standard bone marrow stem ... resulted in reduction of therapeutic effect.  ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... October 09, 2017 , ... At its national board meeting in ... professor in Harvard University’s Departments of Physics and Astronomy, has been selected for membership ... the winning team for the 2015 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental physics for the discovery ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: