When determining sex, exceptions are the rule

For nearly a century, biologists have modeled the evolution of sex chromosomes—the genetic instructions that primarily determine whether an individual will develop into a male or female (or a certain mating type)—resulting ...

Sex as stress management in microbes

Why is sex so popular? The question of why so many organisms reproduce sexually has mystified evolutionary biologists since before Darwin, who wrote, "The whole subject is as yet hidden in darkness." In a recent article in ...

New ancient plant captures snapshot of evolution

In a brilliant dance, a cornucopia of flowers, pinecones and acorns connected by wind, rain, insects and animals ensure the reproductive future of seed plants. But before plants achieved these elaborate specializations for ...

The smell of fear warns other voles

Many encounters between predators and prey take place in dense vegetation. Predators lurk and wait for the best moment to attack, but are seldom visible. For a prey animal, the smell of a predator is one of many signals for ...

Novel sperm membrane protein facilitates mammalian fertilization

Fertilization is a fundamental process in sexual reproduction when the combination of male and female gametes blends genetic material to create a new unique individual. Now, researchers from Japan have identified a new factor ...

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