The impact of environmental change on host-parasite coevolutionary dynamics

Mostowy, Rafal and Engelstaedter, Jan (2011) The impact of environmental change on host-parasite coevolutionary dynamics. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 278 1716: 2283-2292. doi:10.1098/rspb.2010.2359

Author Mostowy, Rafal
Engelstaedter, Jan
Title The impact of environmental change on host-parasite coevolutionary dynamics
Journal name Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0962-8452
Publication date 2011-08
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1098/rspb.2010.2359
Volume 278
Issue 1716
Start page 2283
End page 2292
Total pages 10
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher The Royal Society Publishing
Language eng
Abstract Environmental factors are known to affect the strength and the specificity of interactions between hosts and parasites. However, how this shapes patterns of coevolutionary dynamics is not clear. Here, we construct a simple mathematical model to study the effect of environmental change on host–parasite coevolutionary outcome when interactions are of the matching-alleles or the gene-for-gene type. Environmental changes may effectively alter the selective pressure and the level of specialism in the population. Our results suggest that environmental change altering the specificity of selection in antagonistic interactions can produce alternating time windows of cyclical allele-frequency dynamics and cessation thereof. This type of environmental impact can also explain the maintenance of polymorphism in gene-for-gene interactions without costs. Overall, our study points to the potential consequences of environmental variation in coevolution, and thus the importance of characterizing genotype-by-genotype-by-environment interactions in natural host–parasite systems, especially those that change the direction of selection acting between the two species.
Keyword Host-parasite coevolution
Antagonistic interaction
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 27 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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