Conference Poster

Investigating the Structure, Function and Evolution of the External Genital Structures of Drosophila Species


Drosophila male genitalia exhibit incredible divergent morphology,representing one of the most striking examples of morphological evolution [1]. To understand the rapid evolution of these traits, ongoing research aims to characterize the genetic architecture underlying differences in genital morphology [2]. Sex-specific behaviours have been shown to potentially originate from differences in brain structure [3]. In most cases gene expression is restricted to small groups of neurons; this would potentially provide a starting point for circuit identification [3]. Focusing on how individual neurons or subsets of neurons contribute to the development and function of neuronal networks would provide an important perspective of the ways in which Drosopholids have evolved, and how this affects certain behaviours such as copulation. The exploitation of techniques that target sub-sets genital neurons will allow for greater understanding as to how such genes function. Furthermore, allow us to identify genetic markers for the neurons that will allow for protein expression to be mapped in important behaviours such as fly copulation.


Evolution, male genitalia, Drosophila, divergence, development, Minos-mediated integration cassette (MiMIC),

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Rattan, Shamma


Supervisors: McGregor, A

Oxford Brookes departments

Faculty of Health and Life Sciences


Year: 2017

© The Author(s)
Published by Oxford Brookes University

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