Even the sperms show brotherhood!

Wed, Feb 27, 2008


They are created in their thousands, for one purpose: to die for their brothers. They are the enigmatic “parasperm”, infertile sperm that can dominate the ejaculate of some flies.

In the fruit fly, Drosophila pseudoobscura, about half the sperm are infertile. Why waste energy producing dud sperm? Luke Holman and Rhonda Snook of the University of Sheffield, UK, may have the answer.

They measured how long sperm survived inside the reproductive tract of the female, which contains sperm-killing chemicals. They found that the more parasperm there was in the ejaculate, the longer the fertile sperm survived. “They forgo reproduction to help their brothers,” says Holman.

There is an infertile sperm “caste” in other fly species, and in butterflies and moths, and Holman suggests they may perform the same sacrificial function. Male humans seem to have evolved an alternative strategy, however. “The most conspicuous adaptation is seminal fluid, which has pH buffers and suppresses female immune activity,” says Holman.


This post was written by:

- who has written 290 posts on The Everything Blog.

I'm a 22 year old guy blogging about things which I feel are important. Currently pursuing B.Tech in Biotechnology.

Contact the author

9 Comments For This Post

  1. Shu Grecco Says:

    This is extremely fascinating, You are a quite skilled blogger. I have joined your rss feed and look forward to seeking more of your wonderful post. Also, I have shared your web site in my social networks!

  2. Bernardina Bashir Says:

    sized jolliffe kozderonas cussed domed krong retrospect snowdrops haghios

  3. cox cable Mesa Says:

    Edited with the article:br /”Edsall, when asked what he prepared to accomplish to incorporate Geno Smith, spat, cursed, and gave the reporter the center finger.”

  4. Basil Nickle Says:

    O, Agent Maus, what a splendid, splendid dinner. Your list is joyful.

  5. Dalila Frattini Says:

    Rattling good info can be found on website . “Every artist was first an amateur.” by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

  6. Delena Stofer Says:

    Hi there, I discovered your website via Google at the same time as looking for a comparable subject, your site came up, it seems great. I’ve bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

  7. registrare un dominio Says:

    Hello my friend! I wish to say that this post is awesome, nice written and come with approximately all important infos. I would like to peer extra posts like this .

  8. Depatures Says:

    I love what you guys are usually up too. This kind of clever work and exposure! Keep up the fantastic works guys I’ve incorporated you guys to my blogroll.

  9. créer site internet gratuit professionnel Says:

    Thank you for your whole hard work on this web page. Debby enjoys going through investigations and it’s really easy to understand why. My spouse and i notice all relating to the lively mode you deliver very important guidance on the web site and in addition improve response from the others on this matter so my simple princess is always discovering so much. Take advantage of the rest of the year. You are always doing a superb job.