Title
Cloacal bacterial diversity increases with multiple mates : evidence of sexual transmission in female common lizards Cloacal bacterial diversity increases with multiple mates : evidence of sexual transmission in female common lizards
Author
Faculty/Department
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
Publication type
article
Publication
Subject
Biology
Source (journal)
PLoS ONE
Volume/pages
6(2011) :7 , p. e22339,1-e22339,5
ISSN
1932-6203
ISI
000292956800044
Carrier
E-only publicatie
Target language
English (eng)
Full text (Publishers DOI)
Affiliation
University of Antwerp
Abstract
Sexually transmitted diseases have often been suggested as a potential cost of multiple mating and as playing a major role in the evolution of mating systems. Yet there is little empirical data relating mating strategies to sexually transmitted microorganisms in wild populations. We investigated whether mating behaviour influences the diversity and composition of cloacal assemblages by comparing bacterial communities in the cloaca of monandrous and polyandrous female common lizards Zootoca vivipara sampled after the mating period. We found that polyandrous females harboured more diverse communities and differed more in community composition than did monandrous females. Furthermore, cloacal diversity and variability were found to decrease with age in polyandrous females. Our results suggest that the higher bacterial diversity found in polyandrous females is due to the sexual transmission of bacteria by multiple mates. The impact of mating behaviour on the cloacal microbiota may have fitness consequences for females and may comprise a selective pressure shaping the evolution of mating systems.
Full text (open access)
https://repository.uantwerpen.be/docman/irua/eb6392/90f3e851.pdf
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