Innovations in Biotechnology and Medical Sciences

What is Gynandromorphism?


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Gynandromorphism

Mains level: NA

Recently, a rare biological phenomenon called Gynandromorphism was observed in dragonflies at Kole wetlands of Kerala.

Gynandromorphism is a core biology concept. We can expect a prelims question in a rare scenario.

Try this question from CSP 2013:

Q.Improper handling and storage of cereal grains and oilseeds result in the production of toxins known as aflatoxins which are not generally destroyed by normal cooking process. Aflatoxins are produced by

(a) Bacteria (b) Protozoa (c) Moulds (d) Viruses


  • Gynandromorphs are individual animals that have both genetically male and female tissues and often have observable male and female characteristics.
  • They may be bilateral, appearing to divide down the middle into male and female sides, or they may be mosaic, with patches characteristic of one sex appearing in a body part characteristic of the other sex.
  • Gynandromorphs occur in insects, spiders, crustaceans, and other arthropods as well as in birds, but they are extremely rare, and discovering one in the field or in the laboratory is a major event.
  • Estimating how frequently they occur is difficult because they usually go unnoticed in species where sexual dimorphism is less pronounced.
  • Gynandromorphs have been reported in mosquitoes, fruit flies, and in other insects, but they are most dramatic in those butterfly species in which the male and female wing colours and patterns are dramatically different.

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