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Parasites in sexual and asexual mollies (Poecilia, Poeciliidae, Teleostei): a case for the Red Queen?


ABSTRACT: The maintenance of sexual reproduction in the face of its supposed costs is a major paradox in evolutionary biology. The Red Queen hypothesis, which states that sex is an adaptation to fast-evolving parasites, is currently one of the most recognized explanations for the ubiquity of sex and predicts that asexual lineages should suffer from a higher parasite load if they coexist with closely related sexuals. We tested this prediction using four populations of the sexual fish species Poecilia latipinna and its asexual relative Poecilia formosa. Contrary to expectation, no differences in parasite load could be detected between the two species.

SUBMITTER: Tobler M 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC1626213 | BioStudies | 2005-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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