Social organization patterns can lower disease risk without associated disease avoidance or immunity

Hock, Karlo and Fefferman, Nina H. (2012) Social organization patterns can lower disease risk without associated disease avoidance or immunity. Ecological Complexity, 12 34-42. doi:10.1016/j.ecocom.2012.09.003


Author Hock, Karlo
Fefferman, Nina H.
Title Social organization patterns can lower disease risk without associated disease avoidance or immunity
Journal name Ecological Complexity   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1476-945X
1476-9840
Publication date 2012-12
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.ecocom.2012.09.003
Volume 12
Start page 34
End page 42
Total pages 9
Place of publication Amsterdam, Netherlands
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Abstract Increasing levels of social contact are often linked with increased risks of horizontal disease transmission. However, it is not immediately apparent whether particular social organization strategies could act as effective endogenous mechanisms to offset these increased risks. Patterns of a contact network structure could therefore convey dual evolutionary benefits, providing individuals with well-organized social systems and simultaneous reduction in pathogen pressure. This could then lead to runaway processes, increasing the complexity of a social interaction pattern without the parallel evolution of mechanisms that mitigate epidemiological risks, such as physiological immunity or avoidance of carriers. Using dynamic network models capable of independently simulating social choice and pathogen transmission, we demonstrate that emergent social organization could protect populations from the spread of pathogens. We further show that, while these effects are system-independent, they rely on both the social organization of host populations and the etiological properties of the pathogen. We demonstrate that, under certain scenarios, increased complexity of social network structure could have evolved in response to pathogen pressure rather than in spite of it.
Keyword Social network
Social dynamics
Disease transmission
Epidemiological model
Host-pathogen interaction
Dynamic network
Self-Structuring Properties
Infectious-Disease
Contact Networks
Group-Size
Clustered Populations
Animal Behavior
Lower Virulence
Evolution
Transmission
Spread
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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