Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Gene knockout makes female mice masculine

Date:
July 9, 2010
Source:
BioMed Central Limited
Summary:
The mammalian fucose mutarotase enzyme is known to be involved in incorporating the sugar fucose into protein. Female mice that lack the fucose mutarotase (FucM) gene refuse to let males mount them, and will attempt copulation with other female mice. Researchers created the FucM mouse mutants in order to investigate the role of this enzyme in vivo.

Laboratory mouse.
Credit: iStockphoto

The mammalian fucose mutarotase enzyme is known to be involved in incorporating the sugar fucose into protein. Female mice that lack the fucose mutarotase (FucM) gene refuse to let males mount them, and will attempt copulation with other female mice. Researchers writing in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Genetics created the FucM mouse mutants in order to investigate the role of this enzyme in vivo.

Chankyu Park worked with a team of researchers from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology and intriguingly gained some insight into the neurological basis of sexual preference. He said, "The FucM knockout mice displayed drastically reduced sexual receptivity, although pregnancy after forced mating attempts by normal sexually experienced males showed that the animals were fertile. The FucM knock-out mice have reduced levels of alpha-fetoprotein, a protein thought to be involved in development of parts of the brain responsible for reproductive behavior."

The mutant female mice were healthy, and behaved normally towards young mice. When approached by male mice, however, they would not adopt the sexually receptive 'lordosis' position. Furthermore, they lost interest in investigating male urine, unlike normal females, and would attempt to mount other females.

Speaking about the results, Park said, "We speculate that these behavioural changes are likely to be related to a neurodevelopmental change in pre-optic area of the female mutant brain , becoming similar to that of a normal male."


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Dongkyu Park, Dongwook Choi, Junghoon Lee, Dae-sik Lim, Chankyu Park. Male-like sexual behavior of female mouse lacking fucose mutarotase. BMC Genetics, 2010; 11 (1): 62 DOI: 10.1186/1471-2156-11-62

Cite This Page:

BioMed Central Limited. "Gene knockout makes female mice masculine." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 July 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100708071619.htm>.
BioMed Central Limited. (2010, July 9). Gene knockout makes female mice masculine. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100708071619.htm
BioMed Central Limited. "Gene knockout makes female mice masculine." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100708071619.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Attacking Superbugs

Attacking Superbugs

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — Two weapons hospitals can use to attack superbugs. Scientists in Ireland created a new gel resistant to superbugs, and a robot that can disinfect a room in minutes. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cultural Learning In Wild Chimps Observed For The First Time

Cultural Learning In Wild Chimps Observed For The First Time

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) — Cultural transmission — the passing of knowledge from one animal to another — has been caught on camera with chimps teaching other chimps. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) — A new study published by the World Wide Fund for Nature found that more than half of the world's wildlife population has declined since 1970. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Annual Dog Surfing Competition Draws California Crowds

Annual Dog Surfing Competition Draws California Crowds

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) — The best canine surfers gathered for Huntington Beach's annual dog surfing competition, "Surf City, Surf Dog." Duration: 01:15 Video provided by AFP
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

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