(CTN News) – The tsetse fly Miscarriages is a biting insect that transmits a parasite that causes sleeping sickness in humans whereas Nagana afflicts animals.
When female tsetse flies, which give birth to enormous, adult-sized live young, get older, they are more likely to experience miscarriages as the likelihood of miscarriage increases.
Researchers from the Universities of Bristol, Oxford, Notre Dame in the US and Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine investigated the causes and consequences of these miscarriages (or spontaneous abortions) in tsetse flies.
A question was raised regarding how abortions affect the size and gender of the offspring, and whether factors such as nutrition affect the frequency of miscarriages following an abortion.
During their study, the scientists discovered that early-stage abortions are mostly observed in very young female tsetse flies and then gradually increase as those flies reach an older age.
According to the study, they found no evidence that abortions were adaptive strategies, in other words, the tsetse flies that had abortions did not produce more offspring or have more females in the future.
The results from this study could help to improve our ability to predict the spread of tsetse-borne diseases by feeding into predictive models of the dynamics of tsetse populations.
There is a great deal of interest in the way the risk of miscarriage varies based on a woman’s age and stage of pregnancy, but there are not enough detailed data on miscarriages across animals (including humans) to study it, according to Dr Sinead English, who works at the University of Bristol’s School of Biological Studies.
It is possible to gain new insights into pregnancy outcomes by using the tsetse fly as a model and we can also improve our understanding of this fascinating insect by using the tsetse fly as a model.”
“This research brought new meaning to the idea of looking for a needle in a haystack,” said Lee Haines, Honorary Fellow at LSTM and Associate Professor at the University of Notre Dame.
The task of sifting through tsetse poo in search of prematurely expelled eggs may not sound like a rewarding endeavor, but with the help of a microscope, we were able to count the eggs reliably, and we were able to correlate their frequency to the age of the females.
As a matter of fact, this is something that isn’t possible in the natural habitats of tsetse fly Miscarriages.
In addition, it was astonishing to be able to take a look at and compare the size difference between the egg and the full-sized pupa, especially when you consider that an egg must develop into a full-term baby in just ten days. Think about it – from a baby to a full-grown adult in ten days? “It is just mind-blowing.”