The Acp26Aa seminal fluid protein is a modulator of early egg hatchability in Drosophila melanogaster

T. Chapman, L. A. Herndon, Y. Heifetz, L. Partridge, M. F. Wolfner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

65 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Drosophila melanogaster male accessory gland proteins (Acps) that are transferred in the ejaculate with sperm mediate post-mating competition for fertilizations between males. The actions of Acps include effects on oviposition and ovulation, receptivity and sperm storage. Two Acps that modulate egg production are Acp26Aa (ovulin) and Acp70A (the sex peptide). Acp26Aa acts specifically on the process of ovulation (the release of mature eggs from the ovaries), which is initiated 1.5 h after mating. In contrast, sperm storage can take as long as 6-9 h to complete. Initial ovulations after matings by virgin females will therefore occur before all sperm are fully stored and the extra eggs initially laid as a result of Acp26Aa transfer are expected to be inefficiently fertilized. Acp26Aa-mediated release of existing eggs should not cause a significant energetic cost or lead to a decrease in female lifespan assuming, as seems likely, that the energetic cost of egg laying comes from de novo egg synthesis (oogenesis) rather than from ovulation. We tested these predictions using Acp26Aa1 mutant males that lack Acp26Aa but are normal for other Acps and Acp26Aa2 males that transfer a truncated but fully functional Acp26Aa protein. Females mating with Acp26Aa2 (truncation) males that received functional Acp26Aa produced significantly more eggs following their first matings than did mates of Acp26Aa1 (null) males. However, as predicted above, these extra eggs, which were laid as a result of Acp26Aa transfer to virgin females, showed significantly lower egg hatchability. Control experiments indicated that this lower hatchability was due to lower rates of fertilization at early post-mating times. There was no drop in egg hatchability in subsequent non-virgin matings. In addition, as predicted above, females that did or did not receive Acp26Aa did not differ in survival, lifetime fecundity or lifetime progeny, indicating that Acp26Aa transfer does not represent a significant energetic cost for females and does not contribute to the survival cost of mating. Acp26Aa appears to remove a block to oogenesis by causing the clearing out of existing mature eggs and, thus, indirectly allowing oogenesis to be initiated immediately after mating. The results show that subtle processes coordinate the stimulation of egg production and sperm storage in mating pairs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1647-1654
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume268
Issue number1477
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 22 2001
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

egg hatchability
Accessories
Drosophila melanogaster
Eggs
Modulators
Ovum
Spermatozoa
egg
Ovulation
Oogenesis
spermatozoa
protein
Fluids
ovulation
fluid
oogenesis
sperm
Costs
Costs and Cost Analysis
Proteins

Keywords

  • Acp26Aa
  • Drosophila melanogaster
  • Egg production
  • Fertilization
  • Reproductive success
  • Seminal fluid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

The Acp26Aa seminal fluid protein is a modulator of early egg hatchability in Drosophila melanogaster. / Chapman, T.; Herndon, L. A.; Heifetz, Y.; Partridge, L.; Wolfner, M. F.

In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Vol. 268, No. 1477, 22.08.2001, p. 1647-1654.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Chapman, T. ; Herndon, L. A. ; Heifetz, Y. ; Partridge, L. ; Wolfner, M. F. / The Acp26Aa seminal fluid protein is a modulator of early egg hatchability in Drosophila melanogaster. In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 2001 ; Vol. 268, No. 1477. pp. 1647-1654.
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