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Scott Pitnick
Syracuse University
Sexual selectionSperm competitionSpermGeneticsBiology
77Publications
41H-index
5,409Citations
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Publications 78
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#1Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
#2Mariana F. Wolfner (Cornell University)H-Index: 65
Last. Steve Dorus (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 3
view all 3 authors...
Mammalian sperm must spend a minimum period of time within a female reproductive tract to achieve the capacity to fertilize oocytes. This phenomenon, termed sperm 'capacitation', was discovered nearly seven decades ago and opened a window into the complexities of sperm-female interaction. Capacitation is most commonly used to refer to a specific combination of processes that are believed to be widespread in mammals and includes modifications to the sperm plasma membrane, elevation of intracellul...
1 CitationsSource
#1Stefan Lüpold (UZH: University of Zurich)H-Index: 24
#2Jonathan Bradley Reil (U.H.: University of Hawaii at Manoa)H-Index: 1
Last. Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
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How males and females contribute to joint reproductive success has been a long-standing question in sexual selection. Under postcopulatory sexual selection (PSS), paternity success is predicted to derive from complex interactions among females engaging in cryptic female choice and males engaging in sperm competition. Such interactions have been identified as potential sources of genetic variation in sexually selected traits but are also expected to inhibit trait diversification. To date, studies...
1 CitationsSource
#1Patrick T. Rohner (UZH: University of Zurich)H-Index: 6
#2Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
Last. Stefan Lüpold (UZH: University of Zurich)H-Index: 24
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Support for macroecological rules in insects is mixed, with potential confounding interrelations between patterns rarely studied. We here investigate global patterns in body and wing size, sexual size dimorphism and range size in common fruit flies (Diptera: Drosophilidae) and explore potential interrelations and the predictive power of Allen's, Bergmann's, Rensch's and Rapoport's rules. We found that thorax length (r2 = 0.05) and wing size (r2 = 0.09) increased with latitude, supporting Bergman...
3 CitationsSource
Sperm morphological variation has attracted considerable interest and generated a wealth of (mostly descriptive) studies over the past three centuries. Yet, apart from biophysical studies linking sperm morphology to swimming velocity, surprisingly little is known about the adaptive significance of sperm form and the selective processes underlying its tremendous diversification throughout the animal kingdom. Here, we first discuss the challenges of examining sperm morphology in an evolutionary co...
5 CitationsSource
#1Brian E. Gress (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 5
#2Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
Theory predicts that sperm competition will favour the production of larger ejaculates. However, because the benefits of greater reproductive investment are balanced by the costs of spermatogenesis, expenditure should depend on male physiology, mating rate and the relationship between additional investment and fertilization gains. In the yellow dung fly, Scathophaga stercoraria, males adopt size-dependent alternative mating tactics that are associated with discrete ecological resources (foraging...
1 CitationsSource
#1Elizabeth M. Droge-Young (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 5
#2John M. Belote (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 30
Last. Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
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Abstract Postcopulatory sexual selection occurs when sperm from multiple males occupy a female’s reproductive tract at the same time and is expected to generate strong selection pressures on traits related to competitive fertilization success. However, knowledge of competitive fertilization success mechanisms and characters targeted by resulting selection is limited, partially due to the difficulty of discriminating among sperm from different males within the female reproductive tract. Here, we ...
7 CitationsSource
#1Stefan Lüpold (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 24
#2Mollie K. Manier (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 20
Last. Scott PitnickH-Index: 41
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The ‘big-sperm paradox’, the observed production of few, gigantic sperm by some fruit flies (seemingly at odds with fundamental theory addressing how sexual selection works) is shown to be a result of co-evolution driven by genetic and functional relationships between sperm length, design of the female reproductive tract and features of the mating system.
43 CitationsSource
#1Caitlin E. McDonough (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 1
#2Emma Whittington (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 3
Last. Stephen Dorus (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 14
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Abstract Following mating and insemination, fertility is dependent on the successful execution of a complex array of morphological, physiological and molecular interactions between male and female proteins, cells and tissues. Many of these interacting components bear hallmarks of co-evolving systems and are suspected to contribute to postmating, prezygotic (PMPZ) reproductive barriers involved in the formation of new species. Although PMPZ reproductive isolation has historically been more diffic...
13 CitationsSource
#1Elizabeth M. Droge-Young (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 5
#2John M. Belote (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 30
Last. Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
view all 4 authors...
We address the adaptive significance of female remating in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum, a model system with an extreme mating system of little-to-no premating discrimination and rapid remating. In light of their specific ecology: the occupation of dried grain stores with no use of liquid water, we tested predictions of 4 nonmutually exclusive hypotheses addressing direct benefits that females may receive from mating: 1) topping off of sperm, 2) oviposition-stimulating seminal plasm...
9 CitationsSource
#1Brian E. Gress (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 5
#2William T. Starmer (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
Last. Scott Pitnick (SU: Syracuse University)H-Index: 41
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Geoff Parker’s investigations of the yellow dung fly mating system revitalized interest in sexual selection theory, sparked development of sperm competition and sexual conflict theories, and stimulated use of this species as an important model system. Numerous studies across widespread populations have demonstrated large-male advantages in competition contests occurring on dung in cow pastures; however, recent work suggests that smaller males adopt an alternative mating tactic by avoiding dung a...
2 CitationsSource
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