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Type: Journal article
Title: Greater sperm complexity in the Australasian old endemic rodents (Tribe: Hydromyini) is associated with increased levels of inter-male sperm competition
Author: McLennan, H.
Lüpold, S.
Smissen, P.
Rowe, K.
Breed, W.
Citation: Reproduction, Fertility and Development, 2017; 29(5):921-930
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
Issue Date: 2017
ISSN: 1031-3613
Statement of
Hanna J. McLennan, Stefan Lüpold, Pete Smissen, Kevin C. Rowe and William G. Breed
Abstract: Spermatozoa exhibit considerable interspecies morphological variation across mammals, especially among murid rodents. In Australasia, most murids in the tribe Hydromyini have a spermatozoon with a highly complex head exhibiting an apical hook, characteristic of most murids, and two projections that extend from its upper concave surface, the ventral processes. In the present study we performed a phylogenetically controlled comparison of sperm morphology across 45 species of hydromyine rodents to test the hypothesis that the length and angle of both the apical hook and ventral processes, as well as the length of the sperm tail, increase with relative testes mass as a proxy for differences in levels of inter-male sperm competition. Although both sperm head protrusions exhibited considerable variation in their length and angle across species, only the angles increased significantly in relation to relative testes mass. Further, the length of the sperm flagellum was positively associated with relative testes mass. These results suggest that, in hydromyine rodents, the angle of the apical hook and ventral processes of the sperm head, as well as the sperm tail length, are likely to be sexually selected traits. The possible functional significance of these findings is briefly discussed.
Keywords: apical hook; hydromyine rodents; Muridae; spermatozoa; ventral processes
Description: Published online: 29 February 2016
Rights: © Authors. Journal compilation © CSIRO 2017
RMID: 0030045706
DOI: 10.1071/RD15425
Appears in Collections:Medical Sciences publications

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