Scientists Figure Out the Point of Sex

Finally, after over a century of debate, scientists seem to have answered the thorny question of sex, and, specifically, why.

As we all know here in the real world, the actual point of sex, which is a conspiracy of Big Psychoanalysis, is to cause emotional distress and create neuroses. But in science-world, all the poor scientists have been sitting around in their elaborate science-buildings wearing lab coats and science-goggles (?) and asking each other What is the point of sex?. (Ha! Like a bunch of virgin nerds!!) Or, more specifically, Why have animals evolved to reproduce in pairs, instead of cloning themselves?

Generally, scientists have assumed sexual reproduction helps stave off bacterial infection and parasites (with which we are all apparently engaged in an "arms race" to evolve more quickly). And now, enterprising scientists at the University of Indiana Indiana University [Ed. note: Whatever, hoosiers.] believe they have confirmed this theory. With worm sex!

But experts at the University of Indiana may have provided the best evidence yet after engineering two types of worms, some which could only reproduce by mating with each other and some could only clone themselves.

After exposing them to a harmful bacteria, worms that reproduced through sex survived fairly well while those that were asexual died rapidly.

Co-author Curtis Lively said: "The Red Queen Hypothesis predicts that sex should allow hosts to evade infection from their parasites, whereas self-fertilisation may increase the risk of infection. The coevolutionary struggle between hosts and their parasites could explain the existence of males."

Thanks, science, for finally letting us all know what the point of sex is! And the existence of males, because, seriously, we were wondering.

[Telegraph]