Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A new study examines how shared pathogens affect host populations

29.04.2005


Many pathogens are able to infect multiple species within a community and are commonly transmitted across species. Cross-species transmission is often associated with pathogen emergence and therefore has been considered as a negative factor for humans, wildlife, and species of agricultural importance.



Many pathogens like malaria, Lyme disease or West Nile encephalitis that infect multiple hosts are commonly transmitted by vectors, and their transmission rate is often thought to depend on the proportion of hosts or vectors infected (i.e. frequency dependence). A study, to appear in the July 2005 issue of The American Naturalist, by Volker H. W. Rudolf and Janis Antonovics provides an important conceptual counterexample to the idea that sharing pathogens necessarily affects host populations negatively.

They show that if there is frequency-dependent transmission, a host can be rescued from pathogen-mediated extinction by the presence of a second host with which it shares a pathogen. Sharing a pathogen among one or more alternative species may actually be limiting the spread of the pathogen in any one particular host population. Thus, an epidemic on one species may result because of loss or reduction in the abundance of species in the community, without any numerical or genetic change in the host or pathogen. Studying only the target species or the abiotic environment would not reveal the cause of the epidemic.


Their results have not only important consequences for understanding the role of pathogens in species interactions but also provide a potential mechanism linking host biodiversity and ecosystem functioning.

Carrie Olivia Adams | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.uchicago.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Amputees can learn to control a robotic arm with their minds
28.11.2017 | University of Chicago Medical Center

nachricht The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change
17.11.2017 | Deutsches Zentrum für integrative Biodiversitätsforschung (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>