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Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2009 May-Jun;39(5-6):366-71. doi: 10.1016/j.ibmb.2009.03.003. Epub 2009 Mar 28.

Proteomic analysis of Drosophila mojavensis male accessory glands suggests novel classes of seminal fluid proteins.

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  • 1Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona, Tucson, 85721, USA.


Fruit-flies of the genus Drosophila are characterized by overwhelming variation in fertilization traits such as copulatory plug formation, sperm storage organ use, and nutritional ejaculatory donation. Despite extensive research on the genetic model Drosophila melanogaster, little is known about the molecular underpinnings of these interspecific differences. This study employs a proteomic approach to pin-point candidate seminal fluid proteins in Drosophila mojavensis, a cactophilic fruit-fly that exhibits divergent reproductive biology when compared to D. melanogaster. We identify several classes of candidate seminal fluid proteins not previously documented in the D. melanogaster male ejaculate, including metabolic enzymes, nutrient transport proteins, and clotting factors. Conversely, we also define 29 SFPs that are conserved despite >40 million years of Drosophila evolution. We discuss our results in terms of universal processes in insect reproduction, as well as the specialized reproductive biology of D. mojavensis.

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