September 02, 2015

Male Seahorse Nourishes Baby Like A Human Mother


Dr  Whittington and her colleagues found the pouches deliver in particular energy-rich lipids and calcium to the embryos inside the eggs, to allow them to build their tiny skeletons.

The team also monitored how the dad’s gene activity changed over the course of a pregnancy, and found it is similar to that seen in human mothers at each stage of gestation.

“Surprisingly, seahorse dads do a variety of the identical issues human mums do”, stated Dr Camilla Whittington from the varsity of organic sciences.

After examining the brood pouch throughout embryonic development, the researchers conclude that “key seahorse transcripts share homology with genes of reproductive function in pregnant mammals, reptiles, and other live-bearing fish, suggesting common toolkit of genes regulating pregnancy in divergent evolutionary lineages”. Seahorses are famed for being a part of the one family within the animal kingdom (Syngnathidae) by which the male is chargeable for being pregnant.

It is probably going these vitamins are secreted within the brood pouch after which absorbed by embryos. “Regardless of your species, pregnancy presents a number of complex challenges, like ensuring you can provide oxygen and nutrients to your embryos”, Whittington said.

What hasn’t been known until now is the degree to which male sea horses nourish and protect their embryos in their brood pouch during the 24-day gestation period, Sydney University researchers have found. A recent study conducted by the University of Sydney (USYD) explains that these males are more than just pouch providers and actually play as great of a role as many female mammals do during their pregnancies.

By Jean O'Relly

With many thanks to Press Examiner 

See also:

Ruby Seadragon Discovered
Why The Seahorse Wins By A Head