Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Sperm Trading Can Resolve Hermaphrodite Mating Conflicts

Date:
October 13, 2005
Source:
Cell Press
Summary:
By directly manipulating mating performance in a tropical sea slug, Chelidonura hirundinina, researchers of the University of Tübingen have now shed light on the bizarre reproductive conflicts encountered by hermaphroditic animals. In some hermaphroditic species, such as C. hirundinina, mating partners may insist on copulating as a "male," "female," or both, resulting in unique biological conflicts over gender.

By directly manipulating mating performance in a tropical sea slug, Chelidonura hirundinina, researchers of the University of Tübingen have now shed light on the bizarre reproductive conflicts encountered by hermaphroditic animals.
Credit: Anthes et al./Current Biology

Sexual interactions in so-called cross-fertilizingsimultaneous hermaphrodites, such as earthworms, snails, leeches, andsome fishes, have long challenged researchers' understanding of howestablished theories regarding sexual selection apply in cases ofhermaphroditic species. For example, combining male and female genderin one and the same individual, hermaphrodites have been predicted tofrequently be at conflict (theoretically speaking) about which sexualroles to play, because matings are often more costly, in terms ofevolutionary fitness, to one gender than to the other. In such cases,hermaphrodites are predicted to share a preference to copulate in themore beneficial gender role. This would appear to make the interests ofany two potential mates incompatible. For 20 years, evolutionarybiologists have speculated that hermaphrodites may solve such matingconflicts by "trading sperm," that is, giving sperm only when themating partner follows suit. However, this prediction had never beenproven experimentally.

In the new work, researchers Nils Anthes,Annika Putz, and Nico Michiels generated individual sea slughermaphrodites only capable of performing a "dry" copulation--that is,without sperm transfer. Sea slugs that mated with such a "cheating"partner interrupted sexual intercourse significantly sooner than didcontrol pairs. This supports the concept of sperm trading, where matesnegotiate mating roles in order to balance sexual interactions.

###

Theresearchers included Nils Anthes, Annika Putz and Nico K. Michiels ofUniversität Tübingen in Tübingen, Germany. This research was supportedby the DFG and DAAD.

Anthes et al.: "Gender trading in a hermaphrodite." Publishing in Current Biology Vol 15, pages R792-R793, October 11, 2005 www.current-biology.com


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cell Press. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cell Press. "Sperm Trading Can Resolve Hermaphrodite Mating Conflicts." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 October 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051011072817.htm>.
Cell Press. (2005, October 13). Sperm Trading Can Resolve Hermaphrodite Mating Conflicts. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051011072817.htm
Cell Press. "Sperm Trading Can Resolve Hermaphrodite Mating Conflicts." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/10/051011072817.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Awesome New Camouflage Sheet Was Inspired By Octopus Skin

Awesome New Camouflage Sheet Was Inspired By Octopus Skin

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) — Scientists have developed a new device that mimics the way octopuses blend in with their surroundings to hide from dangerous predators. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Disquieting Times for Malaysia's 'fish Listeners'

Disquieting Times for Malaysia's 'fish Listeners'

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) — Malaysia's last "fish listeners" -- practitioners of a dying local art of listening underwater to locate their quarry -- try to keep the ancient technique alive in the face of industrial trawling and the depletion of stocks. Duration: 02:29 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
USDA Cracks Down On Imports From Foreign Puppy Mills

USDA Cracks Down On Imports From Foreign Puppy Mills

Newsy (Aug. 18, 2014) — New USDA measures to regulate dog imports aim to crack down on buying dogs from overseas puppy mills. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bone Marrow Drug Regrows Hair In Some Alopecia Patients

Bone Marrow Drug Regrows Hair In Some Alopecia Patients

Newsy (Aug. 18, 2014) — Researchers performed an experiment using an FDA-approved drug known as ruxolitinib. They found it to be successful in the majority of patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins