A model to explain the origin of a parasite sex-specific population structure

Abstract : A discrete time model was built to understand the origin of the sex-specific population structure of the human blood fluke, Schistosoma mansoni. We have estimated both male/female individual ratio and male/female genotype ratio of this parasite taking into account all the experimental published values on differential male and female life-history traits all along the life cycle. We considered in our model male and female life-history traits when both separated and together. The model showed that both male/female individual ratio and male/female genotype ratio of S. mansoni adults are biased toward males in each combination. This bias was more important in male/female genotype ratio than in the male/female individual ratio for the same initial values of cercarial development success. This model could explain the sex specific population structure of this parasite. Firstly, we showed that the male-biased individual ratio finds its origin in the vertebrate host. Secondly, we showed that the male-biased genotype ratio originates prior to any interrelationship between adult worms and could generate by itself a sex-specific genetic structure
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J. Boissier, J. Jarkovsky, S. Morand, H. Moné. A model to explain the origin of a parasite sex-specific population structure. Theoretical Population Biology, Elsevier, 2004, 66, pp.269-276. ⟨10.1016/j.tpb.2004.06.008⟩. ⟨hal-01495264⟩

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