SEOUL, Feb. 22 (Korea Bizwire) — Korean researchers have isolated a link between stress hormones and infertility in female Drosophila (fruit flies).
A research team led by Prof. Kim Young-joon of the Biological Science Department at the Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST) discovered that neuronal mechanisms in female Drosophila melanogaster control sperm retention and storage, and influence sperm competition, which takes place in the sperm storage organs of polyandrous Drosophila melanogaster females.
A female Drosophila melanogaster lays hundreds of eggs over a period of two weeks after retaining sperm in its storage organ. During this process, the female controls the quantity of sperm to be expelled.
The team showed that suppression of Dh44 signals, which are composed of a neuropeptide that is similar to a family of related neuropeptides that have physiological effects on stress and anxiety in vertebrates, resulted in the reduction of sperm in the storage organs, with the number of eggs being laid decreasing by 70 percent. However, the enhancement of Dh44 signals delayed sperm expulsion to the normal level found in healthy D. melanogaster females.
The research team is hoping that the results will serve as a valuable asset for future research to isolate links between stress hormones and infertility in humans.
By J. W. Choi (firstname.lastname@example.org)