This week's picks
Failure to fix nitrogen by non-reproductive symbiotic rhizobia triggers host sanctions that reduce fitness of their reproductive clonemates
This paper, by my former PhD student Ryoko Oono and Carolyn Anderson, formerly an undergrad in our lab and now a grad student at UC Davis, was published on-line months ago, so I've already discussed it.
Sib mating without inbreeding in the longhorn crazy ant
"Workers developed through normal sexual reproduction between queens and males. However, queens were produced clonally and, thus, were genetically identical to their mothers. In contrast, males never inherited maternal alleles and were genetically identical to their fathers. The outcome of this system is that genetic inbreeding is impossible because queen and male genomes remain completely separate." -- crazy indeed, but this is essentially how we make hybrid corn.
Sexual imprinting on ecologically divergent traits leads to sexual isolation in sticklebacks "imprinting is essential for sexual isolation between species; isolation was reduced when females were raised without fathers"