Transcriptomes of parents identify parenting strategies and sexual conflict in a subsocial beetle
Parker, D., Cunningham, C. B., Walling, C. A., Stamper, C. E., Head, M. L., Roy-Zokan, E. M., McKinney, E. C., Ritchie, M. G., & Moore, A. J. (2015). Transcriptomes of parents identify parenting strategies and sexual conflict in a subsocial beetle. Nature Communications, 6, Article 8449. https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms9449
Published inNature Communications
© 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material.
Parenting in the burying beetle Nicrophorus vespilloides is complex and, unusually, the sex and number of parents that can be present is flexible. Such flexibility is expected to involve specialized behaviour by the two sexes under biparental conditions. Here, we show that offspring fare equally well regardless of the sex or number of parents present. Comparing transcriptomes, we find a largely overlapping set of differentially expressed genes in both uniparental and biparental females and in uniparental males including vitellogenin, associated with reproduction, and takeout, influencing sex-specific mating and feeding behaviour. Gene expression in biparental males is similar to that in non-caring states. Thus, being ‘biparental’ in N. vespilloides describes the family social organization rather than the number of directly parenting individuals. There was no specialization; instead, in biparental families, direct male parental care appears to be limited with female behaviour unchanged. This should lead to strong sexual conflict. ...
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Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material.
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