University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Departmental Seminar Programme, Department of Veterinary Medicine > Expanding the one-host one-pathogen framework: implications for disease emergence and wildlife health

Expanding the one-host one-pathogen framework: implications for disease emergence and wildlife health

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Much of the research in disease ecology and evolution has traditionally focused on a one host–one parasite framework. And yet, in natural systems, hosts are usually co-infected by multiple parasites, and many parasites can infect several host species. My research aims to understand how these real-world complexities drive the ecology and evolution of parasites and their hosts. First I will address how interactions between co-infecting parasites can have implications for host health and disease transmission. First by building a conceptual framework for understanding how parasite communities might interact within a host, and then by showing preliminary data from field experiments aimed at understanding stability and resilience in parasite communities. The second part of my talk focuses on understanding how parasites are able to persist on multiple hosts, and how these multi-host parasites may contribute to host shifts and disease emergence. To address these issues I will discuss recent work on pathogen sharing in wild primates; specifically addressing how phylogeny and geography are likely to determine which parasites infect which hosts, and how these patterns can be translated into risk maps, which may help predict when and where diseases may emerge within wild primates and from primates to humans.

This talk is part of the Departmental Seminar Programme, Department of Veterinary Medicine series.

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