Navigation Links
Inheritance of lifespan is sex-dependent in fruit flies
Date:9/13/2013

This news release is available in German.

Like mother, like daughter; like father, like son. Evolutionary biologists at the universities in Bielefeld (Germany) and Uppsala (Sweden) have now shown that this proverb also applies to inheriting a long life at least for fruit flies (Drosophila). The research team found that the descendants of these insects mostly inherit their lifespan from their own sex: male descendants will very probably live about as long as their fathers; female descendants, about as long as their mothers. The scientists have published their findings on Thursday 12 September in the renowned journal American Naturalist".

The new study by the GermanSwedish research team has turned a previous assumption by biologists and physicians upside down: up to now, they had thought that the genetic risk of a disease was equally strong in both female and male descendants.

The study proceeded from the assumption that the average life expectancy of women and men differs this may be for genetic reasons but also due to different lifestyles. The GermanSwedish research team wanted to find out how far this sex difference in the lifespan depends on the genetic make-up.

To carry out their experiments, the researchers intervened in the heredity of fruit flies by cross-breeding them with special fly mutants. This enabled them to breed 50 hemi-clones; that is, groups of individuals in whom one-half of the genetic make-up is absolutely identical, whereas the other half is completely unrelated. From each hemi-clone, the researchers determined the lifespan of 400 females and 400 males. 'What's special about this approach is that it enables us to measure the influence of this 50 per cent identical genetic make-up in both sexes', says Dr. Holger Schielzeth from the Faculty of Biology one of the authors of the study.

The authors then used the data from the hemi-cloned fruit flies to read off how similar the individuals in a hemi-clone are and how far females and males from one hemi-clone share the same lifespan. Results showed that the lifespan was very similar within sexes, whereas the calculated relation between sexes was only slight. Hence, Methuselah genes in the father exert only a limited influence on female descendants at least in fruit flies. Vice versa, particularly long-lived females do not necessarily have long-lived brothers, fathers, or sons. Approximately three-quarters of the genetic components of life expectation are effective only within the same sex.

The researchers conclude that the risk of a fatal hereditary disease is passed on above all within the same sex. 'Gene variants that could be problematic for one sex seem to have only a comparatively low influence on the life expectation of the other sex', says Holger Schielzeth. In principle, this finding could also generalize to human beings, because human life expectancy is also hereditary. According to Schielzeth, this sex-specific heredity may also be relevant for medicine, and that therapies should pay more attention to sex-specific risks.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Holger Schielzeth
holger.schielzeth@uni-bielefeld.de
49-521-106-2820
University of Bielefeld
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Defying the laws of Mendelian inheritance
2. Herbal extract boosts fruit fly lifespan by nearly 25 percent, UCI study finds
3. Lifespan-extending drug given late in life reverses age-related heart disease in mice
4. Ease of access improves fruit and vegetable consumption
5. Red delicious or wolf apple? Brazilian savanna fruits high in antioxidants
6. Latino families in study eat more fruits and veggies, drink less soda
7. The worlds favorite fruit only better-tasting and longer-lasting
8. Is the humble fig more than just a fruit?
9. Diverse bacteria on fresh fruits, vegetables vary with produce type, farming practices
10. Study offers new insights on invasive fly threatening US fruit crops
11. Wild pollinators increase crop fruit set regardless of honey bees
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:11/21/2016)...   Neurotechnology , a provider of high-precision ... that the MegaMatcher On Card fingerprint matching algorithm ... NIST Minutiae Interoperability Exchange (MINEX) III ... of the evaluation protocol. The ... fingerprint templates used to establish compliance of template ...
(Date:11/17/2016)... 2016 Global Market Watch: Primarily supported ... Population-Based Banks and Academics) market is to witness a value ... shows the highest Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 10.75% ... the analysis period 2014-2020. North America ... by Europe at 9.56% respectively. ...
(Date:11/16/2016)... , Nov. 16, 2016 Sensory Inc ... and security for consumer electronics, and VeriTran ... and retail industry, today announced a global partnership ... way to authenticate users of mobile banking and ... TrulySecure™ software which requires no specialized biometric ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2016)... and BEIJING , Nov. 30, 2016 ... provider of genomic services and solutions with cutting edge ... it has completed a USD $75 Million [515 Million ... Ltd.,s CMB International Capital Management ( Shenzhen ... Co., Ltd. ("SDIC Innovation") and Shanghai Sigma Square Investment ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... 30, 2016   Merck , a leading science ... into a set of agreements with Evotec AG, whereby ... of genetic reagents such as CRISPR and shRNA libraries. ... offers an accelerated pathway to explore and identify new ... identification of new targets, a process that can be ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... Park, NC (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2016 ... ... company engaged in the development of a new orally administered treatment for Alzheimer’s ... and neuroimaging results of a Phase 2a clinical trial of T3D-959 in mild ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... Toronto, ON (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2016 ... ... focused on discovery and development of precision treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced ... disease (AD) (announced on November 3, 2016) blocked propagation of toxic, prion-like forms ...
Breaking Biology Technology: