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The evolution of resistance through costly acquired immunity

Boots, M. and Bowers, R.G. (2004) The evolution of resistance through costly acquired immunity. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 271 (1540). pp. 715-723. ISSN 1471-2954


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We examine the evolutionary dynamics of resistance to parasites through acquired immunity. Resistance can be achieved through the innate mechanisms of avoidance of infection and reduced pathogenicity once infected, through recovery from infection and through remaining immune to infection: acquired immunity. We assume that each of these mechanisms is costly to the host and find that the evolutionary dynamics of innate immunity in hosts that also have acquired immunity are quantitatively the same as in hosts that possess only innate immunity. However, compared with resistance through avoidance or recovery, there is less likely to be polymorphism in the length of acquired immunity within populations. Long-lived organisms that can recover at intermediate rates faced with fast-transmitting pathogens that cause intermediate pathogenicity (mortality of infected individuals) are most likely to evolve long-lived acquired immunity. Our work emphasizes that because whether or not acquired immunity is beneficial depends on the characteristics of the disease, organisms may be selected to only develop acquired immunity to some of the diseases that they encounter.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: Copyright © 2004 The Royal Society. Reproduced in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.
Keywords: Modelling, Invasion Analysis, Adaptive Dynamics, Pathogens, Disease, Immune System
Institution: The University of Sheffield
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Science (Sheffield) > School of Biological Sciences (Sheffield) > Department of Animal and Plant Sciences (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Repository Officer
Date Deposited: 26 Jun 2006
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2014 07:30
Published Version: http://www.journals.royalsoc.ac.uk/openurl.asp?gen...
Status: Published
Publisher: The Royal Society
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1098/rspb.2003.2655
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1388

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