Insights & Perspectives
Germline stem cell maintenance as a proximate mechanism of life-history trade-offs?
Drosophila selected for prolonged fecundity have a slower rate of germline stem cell loss
Article first published online: 30 NOV 2010
Copyright © 2011 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.
Volume 33, Issue 1, pages 5–12, January 2011
How to Cite
Kaczmarczyk, A. N. and Kopp, A. (2011), Germline stem cell maintenance as a proximate mechanism of life-history trade-offs?. Bioessays, 33: 5–12. doi: 10.1002/bies.201000085
- Issue published online: 14 DEC 2010
- Article first published online: 30 NOV 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Revised: 2 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Received: 1 JUL 2010
- germline stem cells;
- life-history evolution;
- reproductive trade-offs
We suggest that the commonly observed trade-offs between early- and late-life reproduction may be mediated by genetic variation in germline stem cell maintenance. Stem cell biology provides a natural framework and experimental methods for understanding the mechanistic basis of life-history evolution. At the same time, natural variation in life-history strategies can serve as a powerful tool for identifying the genes and molecular pathways involved in the maintenance of stem cells in aging adults. We illustrate the connections between life-history and stem cells with examples drawn primarily from Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans, and suggest a number of testable hypotheses and avenues for future investigation that can be addressed with existing models and tools.