Evolution of seasonal transmission patterns in avian blood-borne parasites



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Pérez Rodríguez, Antón David and Hera Fernández, Iván de la and Bensch, Staffan and Pérez Tris, Javier (2015) Evolution of seasonal transmission patterns in avian blood-borne parasites. International Journal for Parasitology, 45 (9-10). pp. 605-611. ISSN 0020-7519, ESSN: 1879-0135

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Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0020751915001149


In temperate regions, many vector-borne parasites maximise their transmission prospects by adjusting reproduction to seasonal cycles of host susceptibility and vector availability. Nevertheless, in these regions there are areas where environmental conditions are favourable throughout the year, so that parasites could benefit from a year-round transmission strategy. We analysed how different transmission strategies (strict summer transmission, extended summer transmission – including spring and autumn, and year round transmission) have evolved among the different genetic lineages of Haemoproteus parabelopolskyi, an avian blood-borne parasite shared by three sibling species of passerine hosts. Our results indicate that the ancestral state of this clade of parasites had a strict summer transmission with the blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) as the host. Other transmission strategies and switches to the other host species (Sylvia abyssinica and Sylviaborin) evolved recently, several times, independently. This suggests that, although year-round transmission is ecologically successful at present, seasonal transmission may have become more stable over evolutionary time. Switches from strict summer to an extended or year-round transmission strategy could have ecological consequences, if they promote the spread of parasites into more distant regions, transported by the migrating bird hosts. Therefore, a deeper knowledge of how different parasite transmission strategies are structured among birds in temperate areas is essential for understanding how disease emergence risks may develop in the future.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Ancestral state reconstruction; Haemoproteus parabelopolskyi; Host switching; Parasite relapse;Parasite transmission seasonality; Sylvia atricapilla
Subjects:Medical sciences > Veterinary > Parasitology
Medical sciences > Biology > Birds
ID Code:41906
Deposited On:24 Mar 2017 10:11
Last Modified:10 Dec 2018 15:25

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