October 24, 2012 9:06
Gender-bending ferns named after Lady Gaga
You may soon be growing Gaga germanotta and Gaga monstraparva in your garden
All part of the same genus of plant, the newly named species include 'Gaga germanotta', after the singer's real name (Stefani Germanotta), and 'Gaga monstraparva', after the Latin translation of 'little monsters'.
The ferns reproduce through spores and the fully-grown plants can end up being male, female, or bisexual. Kathleen Pryer, professor of biology and director of the school's herbarium, explained that this is part of the reason why Gaga was bestowed the honour. Pryer said:
[It's] because of her fervent defense of equality and individual expression… We think that her second album, 'Born This Way,' is enormously empowering, especially for disenfranchised people and communities like LGBT, ethnic groups, women…"
A graduate student studying the genus' DNA also discovered that the letters GAGA appear in the plant's genetic sequence.
Last month, a new type of parasitoid wasp discovered in Thailand was named Aleiodes Gaga after the singer.
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