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Data from: Loss of reproductive parasitism following transfer of male-killing Wolbachia to Drosophila melanogaster and Drosophila simulans

Citation

Bourtzis, Kostas et al. (2012), Data from: Loss of reproductive parasitism following transfer of male-killing Wolbachia to Drosophila melanogaster and Drosophila simulans, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.m78fk

Abstract

Wolbachia manipulates insect host biology through a variety of means that result in elevated fitness of infected females, enhancing its own transmission. A Wolbachia strain (wInn) naturally infecting D. innubila induces male-killing, while native strains of D. melanogaster and D. simulans usually induce cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI). In this study, we transferred wInn to D. melanogaster and D. simulans by embryonic microinjection, expecting conservation of the male-killing phenotype to the novel hosts, which are more suitable for genetic analysis. In contrast to our expectations, there was no effect on offspring sex ratio. Furthermore, no CI was observed in the transinfected flies. Overall, transinfected D. melanogaster lines displayed lower transmission rate and lower densities of Wolbachia than transinfected D. simulans lines, in which established infections were transmitted with near-perfect fidelity. In D. simulans, strain wInn had no effect on fecundity and egg to adult development. Surprisingly, one of the two transinfected lines tested showed increased longevity. We discuss our results in the context of host-symbiont co-evolution and the potential of symbionts to invade novel host species.

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