Side-by-side secretion of late paleozoic diverged courtship pheromones in an aquatic salamander.

Margo Maex, Ines Van Bocxlaer, Dag Treer, Wim Vandebergh, Sunita Janssenswillen, Gwij Stegen, Philippe Kok, Bert Willaert, Severine Matthijs, Erik Martens, Anneleen Mortier, Henri De Greve, Paul Proost, Franky Bossuyt

Onderzoeksoutput: Meeting abstract (Book)


Males of advanced salamanders (Salamandroidea) are unique among vertebrates in having internal fertilization without copulation. Instead, sperm is transferred via an external spermatophore, which females take up with their cloaca. Since a successful transfer of sperm relies on a female following the male track at spermatophore deposition, males have evolved courtship displays to increase the probability of females picking up the sperm. In the aquatically reproducing modern Eurasian newts (Salamandridae), males additionally do not longer display physical contact, but instead largely rely on emitting chemosignals to the female during courtship. Despite the acknowledged importance of pheromones during salamandrid courtship, molecules able to induce the female following behaviour have not been identified yet. Here, we isolated and experimentally tested protein pheromones of the Sodefrin Precursor-like Factor (SPF) family that are secreted in the water during courtship and demonstrate that they can elicit female courtship responses in newts. Phylogenetic analyses of pheromone-encoding transcripts reveal a Late Paleozoic duplication event and imply an early onset of SPF diversification at about 300 million years ago. The simultaneous secretion of early diverged courtship proteins in a single species suggests that these molecules already gained a courtship function in early salamander evolution that has been conserved in multiple salamander lineages ever since.
Originele taal-2English
Titel20th annual meeting
StatusPublished - 4 sep 2014
EvenementEuropean Meeting of PhD Students in Evolutionary Biology, EMPSEB 20 - La Roche-en-Ardenne, Belgium
Duur: 1 sep 20146 sep 2014

Publicatie series

NaamEuropean Meeting of PhD Students in Evolutionary Biology (EMPSEB) - Oral Presentation, La Roche-en-Ardenne, Belgium


ConferenceEuropean Meeting of PhD Students in Evolutionary Biology, EMPSEB 20
StadLa Roche-en-Ardenne


Duik in de onderzoeksthema's van 'Side-by-side secretion of late paleozoic diverged courtship pheromones in an aquatic salamander.'. Samen vormen ze een unieke vingerafdruk.

Citeer dit