Navigation Links
Genes from the father facilitate the formation of new species
Date:10/5/2007

The two closely related bird species, the collared flycatcher and the pied flycatcher, can reproduce with each other, but the females are more strongly attracted to a male of their own species. This has been shown by an international research team directed by Anna Qvarnstrm at Uppsala University in todays Net edition of Science. They demonstrate that the gene for this sexual preference is found on the sex chromosome that is inherited from the father and that only females have a copy of. The discovery sheds new light on how new species are formed.

The formation of new species takes millions of years. It often happens when a population (group of individuals) is divided and separated geographically and then adapts to disparate environments over thousands of generations. For instance, the earths ice ages have led to many such population splits. But divided populations often come into contact with each other before they have had time to become entirely sexually isolated from each other. When individuals mate with each other from such split populations that have not quite become separate species, their offspring (so-called hybrids) often have limited viability.

Anna Qvarnstrms research team from Uppsala University in Sweden, working with scientists from Norway, the Czech Republic, the US, and Holland, have studied natural hybridization between two closely related bird species, the collared flycatcher and the pied flycatcher. The two flycatcher species (or quasi species) have come into contact with each other after having been separated during the last ice age. The question they addressed was whether the flycatchers will conclude the species formation that is under way and become entirely sexually isolated from each other or, instead, if they will meld into the same species again.

We found that females in the hybrid zone develop a sexual preference for males belonging to their own species and that this preference is determined by genes located on the sex chromosome, says Anna Qvarnstrm.

In birds, in contrast with most other animals, it is the females that are the so-called heterogametic sex. Their sex chromosomes are called ZW and correspond to XY in humans. In birds, it is the female that is ZW and the male ZZ, but in humans men are XY and women XX. The results show that the preference for their own species is sited on the sex chromosome that the females inherit from their father. The same chromosome also houses the genes that govern the development of the species-specific plumage.

When genes regulate species-specific features and the preference for these are located close to each other in the DNA, in this case on the same chromosome, species formation is favored. Therefore, the probability of these two flycatcher species merging into the same species again is small, says Anna Qvarnstrm.

It is possible that this will prove to be a general pattern that can explain how new species can continue to exist even if they occasionally hybridize with each other.


'/>"/>

Contact: Anna Qvarnstrm
Anna.Qvarnstrom@ebc.uu.se
46-070-425-0805
Uppsala University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Genes In The Interferon System Important In Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
2. Newly-discovered class of genes determines ?and restricts ?stem cell fate
3. Inexpensive, mass-produced genes core of synthetic biology advances at UH
4. Protein Packages Found To Activate Genes; May Be What Regulates Development And Disease
5. First atlas of key brain genes could speed research on cancer, neurological diseases
6. U-M scientists find genes that control growth of common skin cancer
7. Researchers find missing genes of ancient organism
8. Scientists document complex genomic events leading to the birth of new genes
9. VCU Researchers Identify Networks Of Genes Responding To Alcohol In The Brain
10. Genrate: a generative model that finds and scores new genes and exons in genomic microarray data
11. Advances in the characterisation of the oyster mushroom genes
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/21/2016)... , March 22, 2016 ... with passcodes for superior security   ... leading provider of secure digital communications services, today announced ... technology and offer enterprise customers, particularly those in the ... recognition and voice authentication within a mobile app, alongside, ...
(Date:3/17/2016)... 17, 2016 ABI Research, the leader ... global biometrics market will reach more than $30 ... from 2015. Consumer electronics, particularly smartphones, continue to ... anticipated to reach two billion shipments by 2021 ... Pavlakis , Research Analyst at ABI Research. "Surveillance ...
(Date:3/15/2016)... JERUSALEM , March 15, 2016 ... Jerusalem , the technology-transfer company of the Hebrew University, ... developer of remote sensing technology of various human biological ... funding, raising $2.0 million from private investors. ... technology, based on the detection of electromagnetic emissions from ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2016)... ... , ... Global Stem Cells Group CEO Benito Novas announced that ... GSCG affiliate Kimera Labs in Miami. , In 2004, Ross received his Ph.D. in ... hematologic disorders and the suppression of graft vs. host disease (GVHD) under UM Professor ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... ... April 27, 2016 , ... ... Rothgerber Christie LLP as an associate in the firm’s Intellectual Property practice group. ... mechanical and electromechanical patent applications. He has an electrical engineering and computer engineering ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... ... April 26, 2016 , ... Mr. Palmer created the ... signing the first multi-million dollar, multi-year managed services contract in the U.S. intelligence community ... join our leadership team,” said John Younger, founder of Accolo. “We are growing ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... Hungary , VIENNA ... 2016 The prize recognizes ... the resulting revolutionary innovations that will benefit patients ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160210/331945LOGO ) , ... novel proprietary trend setting products in the field ...
Breaking Biology Technology: