The Plants Have "Fluid Definitions Of Gender"
The new plant genus has so much in common with the singer that the scientists who discovered it felt they should name it after her. Lady Gaga isn't protesting.
It looks like Lady Gaga has fans in the world of science. A new genus of plants, recently discovered by scientists at Duke University in North Carolina, were named after the singer. Gaga germanotta and Gaga monstraparva are two of the newly named fern species.
"A graduate student found that the plant's DNA base pair has a sequence of GAGA, which initially inspired the naming," said the Global Post. "The genus also has 'somewhat fluid definitions of gender,' since its spores can reproduce to be male, female, or both."
It might be a match made in heaven, since Lady Gaga often bends gender stereotypes as well. The Gaga genus includes 19 species, which are found in Mexico, Arizona and Texas.
"We wanted to name this genus for Lady Gaga because of her fervent defense of equality and individual expression," Kathleen Pryer, a professor of biology at Duke University and director of the school's herbarium, said in a statement to MTV News. "And as we started to consider it, the ferns themselves gave us more reasons why it was a good choice."
Gaga germanotta is named after Gaga's family name. And the other plant, Gaga monstraparva, is named after Gaga's fans, known as Little Monsters. For Pryer, the decision to name the plants after a cultural phenomenon was an easy one.
"So often, people give names in honor of old white guys that have worked on ferns for a long time, but we didn't want to do that," she continued. "And there were so many things about these 'Gaga ferns' that we decided to name the new genus after her, to celebrate diversity."
Lady Gaga has yet to comment on the honor, but Pryer told MTV that the singer's camp approved the naming. "They didn't say much, just 'Sounds good' and a little smiley face," she said.
Photo courtesy WENN.com