An all-female freshwater fish species named the Amazon molly that inhabits rivers and creeks together the Texas-Mexico border is dwelling proof that sexual reproduction might be vastly more than-rated.
Scientists mentioned on Monday they have deciphered the genome of the Amazon molly, a single of the couple of vertebrate species to depend on asexual replica, and discovered that it experienced none of the genetic flaws, this sort of as an accumulation of harmful mutations or a deficiency of genetic diversity, they experienced anticipated.
They identified that the Amazon molly, named following the fierce feminine warriors of historical Greek mythology, offers a hardy genetic make-up that tends to make it equally suit, or even more so, than fish employing sexual reproduction in which the two maternal and paternal genes are handed alongside to offspring.
“The Amazon molly is undertaking very well,” explained biologist Manfred Schartl of the University of Wuerzburg in Germany.
“Unexpectedly, we did not find the signs of genomic decay as predicted.”
The fish reproduces utilizing a method in which a woman’s egg mobile develops into a little one without having currently being fertilized by a male’s sperm mobile. But that does not indicate the fish does not need some hanky panky.
“The Amazon molly woman produces clones of by itself by duping a male of a closely relevant species to mate with her. The asexual mode of replica termed gynogenesis requires the female to mate with a male but none of the male’s genome is passed to the offspring,” explained geneticist Wesley Warren of the McDonnell Genome Institute at Washington University in St. Louis.
The Amazon molly’s egg cells are activated to build into an embryo by a sperm mobile that degenerates with out fusing with the egg’s nucleus.
The fish is up to about three inches (8 cm) extended and eats insects, vegetation, algae and other meals. The research showed it originated when two other species, the Atlantic molly and the Sailfin molly, mated about 100,000 to 200,000 many years back.
Animals that reproduce asexually are unusual in contrast to the frustrating bulk that exist as males and females and reproduce sexually.
“It was long thought that vertebrates would not be ready to exist in this kind of a way. It was a sensation when the Amazon molly was the first asexual vertebrate identified in 1932,” Schartl said.
About fifty vertebrates are identified to use asexual copy which includes fish, amphibians and reptiles.
The study was revealed in the journal Character Ecology & Evolution.