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Tomaru, M., Ohsako, T., Watanabe, M., Juni, N., Matsubayashi, H., Sato, H., Takahashi, A., Yamamoto, M.T. (2018). Severe Fertility Effects of sheepish Sperm Caused by Failure To Enter Female Sperm Storage Organs in Drosophila melanogaster.  G3 (Bethesda) 8(1): 149--160.
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Research paper

In Drosophila, mature sperm are transferred from males to females during copulation, stored in the sperm storage organs of females, and then utilized for fertilization. Here, we report a gene named sheepish (shps) of Drosophila melanogaster that is essential for sperm storage in females. shps mutant males, although producing morphologically normal and motile sperm that are effectively transferred to females, produce very few offspring. Direct counts of sperm indicated that the primary defect was correlated to failure of shps sperm to migrate into the female sperm storage organs. Increased sperm motion parameters were seen in the control after transfer to females, whereas sperm from shps males have characteristics of the motion parameters different from the control. The few sperm that occasionally entered the female sperm storage organs showed no obvious defects in fertilization and early embryo development. The female postmating responses after copulation with shps males appeared normal, at least with respect to conformational changes of uterus, mating plug formation, and female remating rates. The shps gene encodes a protein with homology to amine oxidases, including as observed in mammals, with a transmembrane region at the C-terminal end. The shps mutation was characterized by a nonsense replacement in the third exon of CG13611, and shps was rescued by transformants of the wild-type copy of CG13611 Thus, shps may define a new class of gene responsible for sperm storage.

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PubMed Central ID
PMC5765343 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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    G3 (Bethesda)
    G3 : genes - genomes - genetics
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    Aberrations (8)
    Alleles (5)
    Genes (11)
    Natural transposons (1)
    Insertions (3)
    Experimental Tools (1)
    Transgenic Constructs (2)