Aldous Huxley is most famous for “Brave New World” (1932), but among scientists working on sperm competition and reproductive biology his “Fifth Philosopher’s Song” (1920) is also well-known:

In biology texts and lectures, these first two verses are all that are usually quoted, the point being that males must manufacture millions of sperm that compete intensively to fertilize the female’s eggs. They also emphasize that all sperm are different, carrying a random half of the father’s genes. But there is a third, lesser known verse, that after new findings reported this week is sure to get quoted:

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