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Shark Virgin Birth Produces Multiple, Viable Offspring
Journal of Heredity
  • Kevin A. Feldheim, Pritzker Laboratory for Molecular Systematics and Evolution
  • Demian D. Chapman, State University of New York - Stony Brook
  • Doug Sweet, Ohio Department of Natural Resources
  • Sean Fitzpatrick, Queen's University - Belfast, United Kingdom
  • Paulo A. Prodohl, Queen's University - Belfast, United Kingdom
  • Mahmood S. Shivji, Nova Southeastern University
  • Bob Snowden, Pittburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium
Document Type
Publication Date
  • AFLPs,
  • Microsatellites,
  • Parthenogenesis,
  • White-spotted bamboo shark

Facultative automictic parthenogenesis has only recently been confirmed in the most ancient jawed vertebrates, the chondrichthyan fishes (sharks, batoids, and chimeras). To date, however, in both documented cases, the females have only produced a single parthenogen offspring, and none of these have lived for more than 3 days. We present a genetically verified case of automictic parthenogenesis by a white-spotted bamboo shark (Chiloscyllium plagiosum), in which at least 2 parthenogens were produced and survived for 5 years or more. These findings demonstrate that some female sharks are capable of producing, multiple, viable offspring through parthenogenesis.


©The American Genetic Association. 2010. All rights reserved.

Citation Information
Kevin A. Feldheim, Demian D. Chapman, Doug Sweet, Sean Fitzpatrick, et al.. "Shark Virgin Birth Produces Multiple, Viable Offspring" Journal of Heredity Vol. 101 Iss. 3 (2010) p. 374 - 377 ISSN: 0022-1503
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