Monogamy and the Immune System

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Monogamy and the immune system Maryana Ayzikovitch BIO 111 Jonathan Heckmann This article is about experimental research made on two types of mice, monogamy and promiscuous, to see if the sexual behaviors in two closely related mice species have impact on the immune system at DNA molecular level. This research showed us how our social behavior can lead to evolutionary changes at gene level and selection pressure changes. This kind of research was also very important, and couldn’t be done before, because of enormous data analysis which became available with new technology. The research took place at the University of California Berkeley. The research was made under supervision of Matthew MacManes, a NIH sponsored post-doctoral fellow at UC Berkeley. Two types of mouse, monogamy (California mouse) and promiscuous (the deer mouse), were used in this experiment. However, these two types of mice are very close relatives, their sexual behavior is very different, and this was the main key of this experiment. The first step was to test the vaginal bacteria in each type of mice. This part of an experiment showed that the deer mice were exposed to more vaginal bacteria, because of their sexual behavior and selection pressure. The second step was to do genetic analysis on the variety of DNA present comparing to different types of bacteria, and how it related with two different types of species. The result showed that promiscuous mice had two times more bacteria diversity than monogamy mice. The next thing was to test how immune system correlates with bacteria. The result was, that since the promiscuous mice were exposed to more bacteria, their immune system was much stronger then monogamy mice. The article also talks about similar researches in other species. But another very important thing of this project is that it was first next –generation sequent study.
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