Review of the male reproductive biology of the disease vector mosquito. Which parameters are of greatest importance to improve genetic control programmes? Among mosquitoes are species responsible for transmission of serious pathogens to humans. To cope with the current threats to long-term effectiveness of the traditional vector control methods, non-conventional control strategies are being developed. These include autocidal control such as the release of sterile males (sterile insect technique) and the release of -infected males to induce sexual sterility (incompatible insect technique) and pathogen-refractory strain replacement variations using . Sterile male types of techniques particularly depend on released males’ ability to successfully mate with wild females. For that reason, a good understanding of male mating biology, including a thorough understanding of the reproductive system and mating capacity, increases the likelihood of success of such genetic vector control programmes. Here we review the literature concerning the reproduction of mosquitoes with an emphasis on the male biology. We consider sexual maturation, mate finding, insemination, male reproductive capacity, and the occurrence of multiple matings. We also discuss which parameters are of greatest importance for the successful implementation of autocidal control methods and propose questions for future research.
Kisspeptins, a family of neuropeptides encoded by the Kiss1 gene that are mainly expressed in discrete neuronal populations of the hypothalamus, have recently emerged as essential upstream regulatory elements of GnRH (gonadotropin-releasing hormone) neurons and, thereby, potent elicitors of gonadotropin secretion. Indeed, kisspeptins are now recognized as important regulators of key aspects of the maturation and function of the reproductive axis, including the sexual differentiation of the brain, the timing of puberty, the adult regulation of gonadotropin secretion by gonadal hormones, and the control of fertility by metabolic and environmental (e.g., photoperiod) cues. Appreciation of these fundamental biological features has led to the contention that kisspeptins are indispensable elements of the reproductive brain whose relevance goes beyond their crucial physiological roles and may pose potential pathophysiological and therapeutic interest. In spite of such a consensus, recent developments in the field have helped to expand, and somewhat challenged, our current understanding of the neuroendocrine and molecular mechanisms whereby some of the effects of kisspeptins are conducted. This review aims to provide a synoptic and balanced account of the consensus knowledge and recent findings in the field of kisspeptin physiology, which we predict will be crucial in shaping the progress of our understanding of the roles played by this family of neuropeptides in reproductive biology.
Spermatozoa were the first cell type in which the cellular generation of reactive oxygen was demonstrated. This activity has now been confirmed in spermatozoa from all mammalian species examined including the rat, mouse, rabbit, horse, bull and human being. Under physiological circumstances, cellular redox activity is thought to drive the cAMP-mediated, tyrosine phosphorylation events associated with sperm capacitation. In addition to this biological role, human spermatozoa also appear to suffer from oxidative stress, with impacts on the normality of their function and the integrity of their nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. Recent studies have helped to clarify the molecular basis for the intense redox activity observed in defective human spermatozoa, the nature of the subcellular structures responsible for this activity and possible mechanisms by which oxidative stress impacts on these cells. Given the importance of oxidative damage in the male germ line to the origins of male infertility, early pregnancy loss and childhood disease, this area of sperm biochemistry deserves attention from all those interested in improved methods for the diagnosis, management and prevention of male-mediated reproductive failure.
Spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii, is a devastating invasive pest of small and stone fruits in the Americas and Europe. To better understand the population dynamics of D. suzukii, we reviewed recent work on juvenile development, adult reproduction, and seasonal variation in life history parameters including the abiotic/biotic factors that influence these processes. Juvenile development is optimal at moderately warm temperatures, and larvae exhibit some immunity to parasitism. Adults use visual cues and substrate-borne vibrations for courtship and exhibit a bimodal locomotor activity pattern (except mated females). Under 20–27 °C and various conditions, development from egg to adult can take 10–17 days, females first lay eggs within 1–8 days and their lifetime fecundity varies from 400. Oviposition is consistently high in raspberry hosts and fruits with lower penetration force, and the presence of Wolbachia endosymbionts can lower fertility. Drosophila suzukii exhibit seasonal variation with a darker winter morph that is more cold tolerant. Also, D. suzukii likely undergo reproductive diapause in the fall, with colder temperatures and shorter day lengths influencing reproduction. To develop viable IPM programs for D. suzukii, knowledge of abiotic and biotic conditions that impact D. suzukii life history parameters and population dynamics is critical, and gaps in the current knowledge are discussed.
Among calyptraeid gastropods, males become females as they get older, and egg capsules containing developing embryos are maintained beneath the mother's shell until the encapsulated embryos hatch. Crepipatella dilatata is an interesting biological model considering that is an estuarine species and thus periodically exposed to elevated environment-physiological pressures. Presently, there is not much information about the reproductive biology and brooding parameters of this gastropod. This paper describes field and laboratory observations monitoring sex changes, brooding frequencies, sizes of brooding females, egg mass characteristics, and embryonic hatching conditions. Our findings indicate that C. dilatata is a direct-developing protandric hermaphrodite, changing from male to female when individuals were between 18 and 20 mm in shell length. At our study site in Quempillen estuary, females were found to be brooding almost continuously throughout the year, having an average maximum of 85% of simultaneous brooding, with a short rest from April through June. No relationship was found between the number of capsules per egg mass and the size of the brooding female. However, capsule size and the number of embryos and nurse eggs were strongly related to female size. The offspring hatched with an average shell length > 1 mm. About 25% of the hatched capsules were found to contain both metamorphosed (juveniles) and non-metamorphosed (veliger) individuals. The sizes of the latter were < 1000 mu m. The length of hatching juveniles was inversely related to the number of individuals per capsule, which seems related to differences in the availability of nurse eggs per embryo. Although fecundity per reproductive event of this species is relatively low (maximum approx. 800 offspring per egg mass) compared with those of calyptraeid species showing mixed development, the overall reproductive potential of C. dilatata seems to be high considering that females can reproduce up to 5 times per year, protecting their encapsulated embryos from physical stresses until well-developed juveniles are released into the population, avoiding a dangerous pelagic period prior to metamorphosis.