Natures wonders:angler fish weird sex (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Friday, July 31, 2020, 19:46 (8 days ago) @ David Turell

The male has lost its immune system to the point it fuses with the female to reproduce:

https://www.wired.com/story/the-anglerfish-deleted-its-immune-system-to-fuse-with-its-m...

"Within the anglerfish family, there are several reproductive methods. The females of some species fuse with one male; others fuse with multiple males; and still another group have only a temporary fusion. After grinding up 31 tissue samples of 10 species, the team conducted genetic tests and found that species that temporarily fuse to their mates lack the genes responsible for the maturation of antibodies. Species that create a permanent attachment to their mates had also lost a set of additional genes that are responsible for the assembly of T cell receptors and antibody genes that are the foundation of the innate immune system in all vertebrates.

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“'They have gotten rid of everything that is essential for a proper immune response,” says Boehm, whose research focuses on immune systems from several different animal species. “They have no receptors to recognize foreign invaders. They are basically defenseless. A patient like this would never survive and would be dead in no time.'”

Comment: Weird. A very strange finding about a very strange fish.


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