Project 3717: O. Cómbita-Heredia, M. Kuntner, C. J. Gulbronson, R. Ochoa, E. J. Quintero-Gutiérrez, G. Bauchan, H. Klompen. 2021. Size, shape, and direction matters: Matching secondary genital structures in male and female mites using multiple microscopy techniques and 3D modeling. PLOS ONE. 16 (8):e0254974.
Specimen: Megalolaelaps colossus CÓMBITA-HEREDIA, QUINTERO-GUTIÉRREZ, 2018 (OSU/OSAL:OSAL 0099605)
View: Frontal


Studies of female genital structures have generally lagged behind comparable studies of male genitalia, in part because of an assumption of a lower level of variability, but also because internal genitalia are much more difficult to study. Using multiple microscopy techniques, including video stereomicroscopy, fluorescence microscopy, low-temperature scanning electron microscopy (LT-SEM), and confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) we examined whether the complex sperm transfer structures in males of Megalolaelaps colossus (Acari: Mesostigmata) are matched by similarly complex internal structures in the female. While both LT-SEM and CLSM are well suited for obtaining high-quality surface images, CLSM also proved to be a valuable technique for observing internal anatomical structures. The long and coiled sperm transfer organ on the chelicera of the males (spermatodactyl) largely matches an equally complex, but internal, spiral structure in the females in shape, size, and direction. This result strongly suggests some form of genital coevolution. A hypothesis of sexual conflict appears to provide the best fit for all available data (morphology and life history).

Read the article »

Article DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0254974

Project DOI: 10.7934/P3717,
This project contains
  • 16 Media
  • 3 Taxa
  • 3 Specimens
Total size of project's media files: 322.62M

Download Project SDD File
Currently Viewing:
MorphoBank Project 3717

    This research
    supported by

    Authors' Institutions

    • Ohio State University

    • USDA Agricultural Research Service

    • Centro de Investigación en Acarología

    • Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario (ICA)


    member name taxa specimens media
    Orlando Combita Heredia
    Project Administrator

    Project has no matrices defined.

    Project views

    type number of views Individual items viewed (where applicable)
    Total project views3567
    Project overview247
    Media views1962Media search (545 views); M692315 (92 views); M741030 (95 views); M687595 (85 views); M692281 (90 views); M692282 (84 views); M692288 (87 views); M692293 (94 views); M692294 (88 views); M692295 (90 views); M692296 (92 views); M692297 (84 views); M692298 (86 views); M692300 (88 views); M692301 (82 views); M741031 (91 views); M741032 (89 views);
    Specimen list471
    Views for media list549
    Taxon list209

    Project downloads

    type number of downloads Individual items downloaded (where applicable)
    Total downloads from project52
    Project downloads51
    Media downloads1M741030 (1 download);