Syracuse University Magazine

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Reproduction and the Female Fruit Fly

Pictured are the paired sperm-storage organs (spermathecae) within the reproductive tract of a twice-mated female fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. This female has discretely sorted into the separate organs the sperm of her two mates, which came from different populations genetically engineered so that their sperm heads express either a green or red fluorescent protein. A team of SU biologists, led by professors Scott Pitnick and John Belote, is using these unique populations to investigate sperm behavior and the evolutionary biology of reproduction, sexual conflict, and speciation. 

 

Photo courtesy of Mollie Manier and Scott Pitnick