The battle of sex chromosomes
February 2022 – Jan 2026
The sex chromosomes, X and Y, are known to have disproportional importance for fertility, but it is not clear why.
In this project, we hypothesise that an evolutionary force, meiotic drive, known to negatively affect fertility in primitive animals and mice, also has an adverse effect on primate fertility because it entails a genetic fight between the X and Y for transmission into mature sperm. Spermatogenesis is a very complex biological process and we use single-cell sequencing and visualisation tools to study the detailed transcription signatures in great apes and humans. All molecular analyses are performed at Department of Growth and Reproduction.
The Research Team
Key EDMaRC researchers involved include Kristian Almstrup, Sofia Boeg Winge, Ailsa M. Main, Nina Mørup Nygaard, and Gülizar Saritas. To provide bioinformatic support and evolutionary expertise, we collaborate with Mikkel Heide Schierup from the Bioinformatics Research Centre at Aarhus University. To be able to collect and analyse samples from great apes, we collaborate with Christina Hvilsom from Copenhagen Zoo.
Novo Nordisk Foundation
Key EDMaRC researchers in the project:
Nina Mørup Nygaard