Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Males more considerate than imagined -- at least, in nematode worms

Date:
November 1, 2010
Source:
BioMed Central
Summary:
Male worms plug females after copulation as a form of 'gift', rather than to prevent them from mating again, as had previously been thought. Researchers found that plugged females mated just as often and were just as attractive as those who were unplugged, and that plugging ultimately improved female fitness.

Male worms plug females after copulation as a form of 'gift', rather than to prevent them from mating again, as had previously been thought.

Researchers writing in BioMed Central's open access journal Frontiers in Zoology found that plugged females mated just as often and were just as attractive as those who were unplugged, and that plugging ultimately improved female fitness.

Nadine Timmermeyer worked with a team of researchers from the University of Tuebingen, Germany, to investigate the effects of copulatory plugs in the nematode worm Caenorhabditis remanei. She said, "Our results indicate that plugging neither affects the likelihood that a female is located by males, nor whether or not mating ensues. However, we found that plugging has a significant positive effect on egg production, suggesting that plugs may represent a beneficial act of a male towards its female partner rather than a competitive act between males."

Mating plugs have been documented for a broad range of animal groups, including insects, arachnids, reptiles, and rodents. In the worms studied, plugs consist of gelatinous mass deposited by the male onto the female's vulva at the end of copulation, which then hardens like glue.

Speaking about possible ways that such a seal may benefit both males and females, Timmermeyer said: "A plug may act as a seal, keeping sperm inside the female and preventing the entry of harmful pathogens. It may also contain substances that stimulate the female, or that have nutritious or antimicrobial properties."


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Nadine Timmermeyer, Tobias Gerlach, Christian Guempel, Johanna Knoche, Jens F Pfann, Daniel Schliessmann and Nico K Michiels. The function of copulatory plugs in Caenorhabditis remanei: hints for female benefits. Frontiers in Zoology, 2010; (in press) [link]

Cite This Page:

BioMed Central. "Males more considerate than imagined -- at least, in nematode worms." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101101181456.htm>.
BioMed Central. (2010, November 1). Males more considerate than imagined -- at least, in nematode worms. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101101181456.htm
BioMed Central. "Males more considerate than imagined -- at least, in nematode worms." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101101181456.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Washington Wildlife Center Goes Nuts Over Baby Squirrels

Washington Wildlife Center Goes Nuts Over Baby Squirrels

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) An animal rescue in Washington state receives an influx of orphaned squirrels, keeping workers busy as they nurse them back to health. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Drug ZMapp Cures Lab Monkeys Of Disease

Experimental Ebola Drug ZMapp Cures Lab Monkeys Of Disease

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) In a new study, a promising experimental treatment for Ebola managed to cure a group of infected macaque monkeys. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
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