Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Testis size matters for genome evolution

Date:
March 6, 2014
Source:
Molecular Biology and Evolution (Oxford University Press)
Summary:
Scientists used a sequence dataset from 55 species of primates to test for a correlation between molecular evolutionary rates across a genome (substitution rates) and testes weights, used in the study as a proxy for increased sperm production and competition.

Rhesus macaque monkeys (stock image).
Credit: Maygutyak / Fotolia

In many primates, females mate with multiple partners, causing an often-intense competition amongst males to pass along their DNA to be king of the genome as well as the jungle.

Related Articles


In the advanced online edition of Molecular Biology and Evolution, author Alex Wong used a published sequence dataset from 55 species of primates to test for a correlation between molecular evolutionary rates across a genome (substitution rates) and testes weights, used in the study as a proxy for increased sperm production and competition. It is widely thought that the production of increased numbers of sperm results from more rounds of cell division -- -and with more cell division, more mutations arise during sperm production.

"In general, the speed of genome evolution is higher for species in which males have large testes in comparison to species in which males have small testes," said Wong. "This finding helps us to understand why genomes evolve at different rates in different species, and has implications for our understanding of the relationship between female mate choice and the overall fitness of a population."

Wong applied a sophisticated evolutionary method to detect a correlation between testes size and substitution rate in primates, and found a positive correlation when accounting for other confounding factors. This finding could provide support for the general prediction that sperm competition should result in higher substitution rates as a consequence of higher spermatogenic activity in species that mate with more than one male.

"The current finding of covariance between sperm competition intensity and substitution rates adds to a growing body of knowledge concerning the sources of substitution rate variation," said Wong. "The extent to which this covariance is widespread is not yet clear; application of robust comparative methods to large phylogenetic datasets in other taxa, such as birds and insects, will help to establish its generality."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Molecular Biology and Evolution (Oxford University Press). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. A. Wong. Covariance between testes size and substitution rates in primates. Molecular Biology and Evolution, 2014; DOI: 10.1093/molbev/msu091

Cite This Page:

Molecular Biology and Evolution (Oxford University Press). "Testis size matters for genome evolution." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140306093802.htm>.
Molecular Biology and Evolution (Oxford University Press). (2014, March 6). Testis size matters for genome evolution. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 2, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140306093802.htm
Molecular Biology and Evolution (Oxford University Press). "Testis size matters for genome evolution." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140306093802.htm (accessed March 2, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, March 2, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Whale-Watching Scientists Spot Baby Orca

Whale-Watching Scientists Spot Baby Orca

AP (Feb. 28, 2015) Researchers following endangered killer whales spotted a baby orca off the coast of Washington state, the third birth documented this winter but still leaving the population dangerously low. (Feb. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Drinks for Your Health

The Best Drinks for Your Health

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) When it comes to health and fitness, there&apos;s lots of talk about what foods to eat, but there are a few liquids that can promote good nutrition. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has the healthiest drinks to boost your health! Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cherries, Snap Peas and More Tasty Spring Produce

Cherries, Snap Peas and More Tasty Spring Produce

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) From sweet cherries to sugar snap peas, spring is the peak season for some of the tastiest and healthiest produce. Krystin Goodwin (@Krystingoodwin) has the best seasonal fruits and veggies to spring in to good health! Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods to Battle Stress

The Best Foods to Battle Stress

Buzz60 (Feb. 26, 2015) If you&apos;re dealing with anxiety, there are a few foods that can help. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has the best foods to tame stress. Video provided by Buzz60
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