Archive for Friday, March 16, 2012

Male flies deprived of sex go for booze

March 16, 2012


— Guys, when your sweetheart says “No thanks” to sex, do you knock back a few stiff drinks to feel better? Turns out fruit flies do pretty much the same thing.

That’s the word from a new study that may explain why both species react that way.

In today’s issue of the journal Science, researchers propose a biological explanation for why “Not tonight, dear” may lead to “Gimme another beer.” If it proves true in people, it may help scientists find new medications to fight alcoholism.

In that case, we can thank thousands of frustrated flies.

One by one, these eager Lotharios were put into a container with a female that had just mated. So she was really, really not interested in doing it again anytime soon. She would run away. She would kick the male. She would stick out her egg-laying organ to hold him at bay.

The male flies went through three hour-long sessions of this every day for four days, enough rejection to discourage them from trying any more.

After that experience, rejected flies were put in vials and given a choice of regular food or alcohol-laced food. They consistently went for the alcohol more than did the male flies that had just mated. In fact, they evidently got plastered.


Ron Holzwarth 5 years, 11 months ago

Gee, that information gives the term "bar fly" a whole new meaning.

number3of5 5 years, 11 months ago

As a woman, I should resent this remark, but it hits the nail on the head. Of course it could be reversed to say "Men drive women to drink, then get mad if she does."

Joe Hyde 5 years, 11 months ago

"If it proves true in people, it might help scientists find new medications to fight alcoholism."

Bulletin: the "new medication" has been around for thousands of years; it just isn't available in Kansas yet. Or as the Chinese sage Confucious put it:

"Women who keep man in doghouse end up with man in cathouse."

Paul R Getto 5 years, 11 months ago

We share some genes with the flies, but I never thought this would come out. "Honey I was just buzzin' around the bar, then I landed on the counter, found some spilled beer and really got a BUZZ. Give me a break, sweetheart; at least I didn't get laid!"

yourworstnightmare 5 years, 11 months ago

One must keep in mind that alcohol is a metabolic product of yeast, which is a fruit fly's main food source.

It could be that they are just hungry after all of that trying.

BorderRat 5 years, 11 months ago

I hope this wasn't funded with our Tax Dollars.

Rae Hudspeth 5 years, 11 months ago

hah! I kept reading that headline as Noun Verb..
"Male flies deprived of sex; go for booze " .. and I was curious about the airline he was on.

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