Wednesday, April 20, 2005

The Toxic Fungus Leads the Way

I think it's kind of silly that opponents of gay marriage trot out the argument that point of marriage is to produce children, so a combination of people who can't produce children because of gender incompatibility should not be able to marry.

That said, there was no surefire way to blow a hole in the theory . . . until a little thing came along called
Toxic Fungus.

Smart-pantses at Duke have discovered a type of fungus that can mate and reproduce--in same-sex pairs:

In the April 21, 2005, issue of Nature, the researchers reported that, in the infectious fungus Cryptococcus neoformans, members of the same "sex" can mate and produce offspring. Infection with the fungus can prove life-threatening in humans, and the findings might improve understanding of the fungal biology that underlies the infectious process, the researchers said. Discovery of the same-sex mating might also help elucidate basic principles governing the evolution of sex, they said.

. . .

"The findings suggest for the first time that the fungus has developed a novel type of sexual cycle, allowing sexual reproduction between members of the same mating type," he added. "That ability might confer an advantage for the fungus because patients infected with it predominantly harbor a single mating type, reducing the possibility of normal fungal sexual reproduction."

Link. This cryptococcus* is going to blow Massachusetts wide open.

*Give me a little credit for avoiding the obvious pun.

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