Melissa White

Graduate Student

Genetics, Genomics and Development

BS in Biology, Tufts University, 2015

Mating induces a variety of post-mating responses in the female such as decreased receptivity to additional matings, increased oviposition, and increased food intake. Proteins in the male’s seminal fluid that are transferred to the female initiate many of these responses. Recently, it was discovered that the size of the female’s midgut increases significantly after mating. I am characterizing how male proteins influence this post-mating remodeling of the adult female intestine.

Though much is known about how male reproductive molecules influence female behavior and physiology, the female factors that interact with seminal fluid proteins are relatively unknown. I am also interested in finding a receptor for the seminal fluid protein ovulin.