facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Sexual vs. asexual reproduction studied

Jan. 25, 2010 at 12:54 PM   |   Comments

IOWA CITY, Iowa, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- University of Iowa researchers say they've determined living organisms have good reason for engaging in sexual rather than asexual reproduction.

Assistant Professor Maurine Neiman, Associate Professor John Logsdon Jr. and colleagues said they examined the theory that sexual reproduction, while requiring more time and energy than asexual reproduction, is much more common among living organisms and, therefore, must be beneficial.

The scientists studied sexual and asexual varieties of a New Zealand freshwater snail (Potamopyrgus antipodarum) by sequencing mitochondrial genomes. They discovered the sexually reproducing snails had accumulated harmful DNA mutations at about half the rate of the asexual snails.

"This is the first study to compare mutation accumulation in a species where sexual individuals and asexual individuals regularly coexist, and thus provides the most direct evidence to date that sex helps to counter the accumulation of harmful mutations," Neiman said.

The study appeared in a recent issue of the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution.

© 2010 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
NASA photos show Aral Sea is now just a sliver NASA photos show Aral Sea is now just a sliver
2
Social network Ello getting thousands of requests per hour Social network Ello getting thousands of requests per hour
3
Apple releases fix for 'Shellshock' virus Apple releases fix for 'Shellshock' virus
4
Mount St. Helens shows signs of awakening Mount St. Helens shows signs of awakening
5
Study: dolphins attracted to magnets Study: dolphins attracted to magnets
Trending News
x
Feedback