HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
With fruit fly sex, researchers find mind-body connection

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Male fruit flies are smaller and darker than female flies. The hair-like bristles on their forelegs are shorter, thicker. Their sexual equipment, of course, is different, too.

"Doublesex" is the gene largely responsible for these body differences. Doublesex, new research shows, is responsible for behavior differences as well. The finding, made by Brown University biologists, debunks the notion that sexual mind and sexual body are built by separate sets of genes. Rather, researchers found, doublesex acts in concert with the gene "fruitless" to establish the wing-shaking come-ons and flirtatious flights that mark male and female fly courtship.

Results are published in Nature Genetics.

"What we found here, and what is becoming increasingly clear in the field, is that genetic interactions that influence behavior are more complex than we thought," said Michael McKeown, a Brown biologist who led the research. "In the case of sex-differences in flies, there isn't a simple two-track genetic system one that shapes body and one that shapes behavior. Doublesex and fruitless act together to help regulate behavior in the context of other developmental genes."

How genes contribute to behavior, from aggression to alcoholism, is a growing and contentious area of biology. For more than a decade, McKeown has been steeped in the science, using the fruit fly as a model to understand how genes build a nervous system that, in turn, controls complex behaviors. Since humans and flies have thousands of genes in common, the work can shine a light on the biological roots of human behavior. For example, McKeown recently helped discover a genetic mutation that causes flies to develop symptoms similar to Alzheimer's disease a gene very similar to one found in humans.

Some of McKeown's recent work focuses on understanding gene networks that control sexual behavior. Research on the topic is often contradictory. Some scienti
'"/>

Contact: Wendy Lawton
Wendy_Lawton@brown.edu
401-863-1862
Brown University
30-Nov-2006


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Native fruits bear sweet antioxidants
2. Super fruit fly may lead to healthier humans
3. Do fruit flies have free will?
4. Berkeley Lab Life Sciences division awarded NIH grants for fruit fly, nematode studies
5. Similar brain chemicals influence aggression in fruit flies and humans
6. Researcher focuses on pros, cons of antioxidants from fruits and vegetables
7. Neighbors gone, fruits gone, species gone
8. A frenzy of fruit fly methods featured in Cold Spring Harbor Protocols
9. Why migrate? Its not for the fruit
10. Fatal attraction: Elephants and marula fruit
11. Researchers find link between food odors and lifespan in fruit flies

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


(Date:5/21/2019)... ... 2019 , ... The ASGCT Clinical Trials Finder is a customizable ... United States. Data curated daily from ClinicalTrials.gov ensures the most up-to-date and applicable listings ... to assist in the development of the ASGCT Clinical Trials Finder reviewed ...
(Date:5/16/2019)... ... ... In a FDA-contracted Standard Coordinating Body Workshop held at the ... Asymmetrex founder and director James L. Sherley, M.D., Ph.D. predicted a sea ... cells. Many of the gathered participants dismissed this idea. Few argued against ...
(Date:5/14/2019)... ... May 14, 2019 , ... IMMUNE 3D®, ... beyond immuno-oncology into areas of autoimmunity, fibrosis and skin immunology. In addition, the ... lines for IO discovery efforts. , IMMUNE 3D®’s proprietary platform aims to ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/2/2019)... ... 30, 2019 , ... The centuries old practice of brewing beer thrives today ... breweries, and even home brewing clubs scattered across the nation. , But proper ... mastered can produce a superb product. Students at South Dakota School of Mines ...
(Date:5/2/2019)... , ... May 02, 2019 , ... ... clinic in the greater Boston area. Gone are the days of painful hair ... iX Robotic Hair Restoration System is the only robotic intelligent solution to offer ...
(Date:4/18/2019)... ... April 18, 2019 , ... Taking a ... includes a chemical engineer at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a novel ... possible to manufacture isobutanol and other biofuels more economically. , Isobutanol, like ethanol, ...
(Date:4/15/2019)... ... 2019 , ... Sirrus, Inc., a developer of novel electron-deficient ... to increase production of methylene malonate monomers and oligomers. , The expanded bench ... production facility, which is scheduled to break ground in 2019. “The expanded facility ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: