The role of host parasite interaction in evolution


The Red Queen

The Red Queen

(Image obtained from here)

A recent Science Daily Post mentions, “The coevolutionary struggle between a New Zealand snail and its worm parasite makes sex advantageous for the snail, whose females favor asexual reproduction in the absence of parasites, say Indiana University Bloomington and Swiss Federal Institute of Technology biologists…”.

This made me think of Matt Ridley’s the Red Queen book in which he argues that humans and parasites are in a race just like the Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland. To maintain ‘fitness’ humans evolve such that they can evade parasitic infetions whereas parasites evolve to trump the host immune system.

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Filed under Evolution, My Life My Thoughts

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