Microorganism mediated reproductive isolation in flour beetles (genus Tribolium)

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Science  01 Feb 1985:
Vol. 227, Issue 4686, pp. 527-528
DOI: 10.1126/science.3966160


Reproductive isolation is induced by microorganisms in diverse geographic strains of the flour beetle Tribolium confusum (Coleoptera:Tenebrionidae). The incompatibility between populations is due to nongenetic cytoplasmically inherited factors. Males of infected strains produce no progeny when crossed with females of noninfected strains; however, they produce "normal" numbers of progeny when crossed with infected females. Males from noninfected strains show no reproductive isolation. Infected strains of T. confusum can be cured when tetracycline or other antibiotics are added to the flour medium. "Cured" strains become partially reproductively isolated from all noncured strains including the source strain