In response to mating, the Drosophila female undergoes a series of rapid molecular, morphological, behavioral and physiological changes. Studies in Drosophila and other organisms have shown that stimuli received during courtship and copulation, sperm, and seminal fluid are needed for the full mating response and thus reproductive success. Very little is known, however, about how females respond to these male-derived stimuli/factors at the molecular level. More specifically, it is unclear what mechanisms regulate and mediate the mating response, how the signals received during mating are integrated and processed, and what network of molecules are essential for a successful mating response. Moreover, it is yet to be determined whether the rapid transition of the reproductive tract induced by mating is a general phenomenon in insects. This review highlights current knowledge and advances on the developmental switch that rapidly transitions the female from the 'unmated' to 'mated' state.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Zohar Nir-Amitin for the graphics; support by US-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund , research Grant 3492 (to YH), The Chief Scientist Ministry of Agriculture grant 872-0055-10 (to YH) and US-Israel Binational Science Foundation grant 2009270 (to YH and Mark Siegal).
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