Carla E. Cáceres

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We describe the draft genome of the microcrustacean Daphnia pulex, which is only 200 megabases and contains at least 30,907 genes. The high gene count is a consequence of an elevated rate of gene duplication resulting in tandem gene clusters. More than a third of Daphnia's genes have no detectable homologs in any other available proteome, and the most(More)
© The Ecological Society of America E is concerned with understanding the abundance, diversity, and distribution of organisms in nature, the interactions among organisms and between organisms and their environment, and the movement and flux of energy and nutrients in the environment. Along with an understanding of the principles(More)
Despite the importance of dispersal to ecology, accurate estimates of dispersal rates are often difficult to obtain, especially for organisms that rely on passive dispersal of propagules to colonize new sites. To investigate potential dispersal vectors and relative colonization rates of zooplankton, we conducted a field experiment in which we restricted(More)
Although the genetic basis of inbreeding depression is still being debated, most fitness effects are thought to be the result of increased homozygosity for recessive or partially recessive deleterious alleles rather than the loss of overdominant genes. It is unknown how many loci are associated with inbreeding depression, the genes or gene pathways(More)
Epidemiologists increasingly realize that species interactions (e.g. selective predation) can determine when epidemics start and end. We hypothesize here that resource quality can also strongly influence disease dynamics: epidemics can be inhibited when resource quality for hosts is too poor and too good. In three lakes, resource quality for the zooplankton(More)
I investigated the population dynamics and competitive interactions of two species of the suspension-feeding crustacean Daphnia in Oneida Lake, N.Y. Both species have persisted in the lake for decades, but their water-column densities are negatively correlated. The larger Daphnia pulicaria dominates in some years, the smaller D. galeata mendotae in others,(More)
Species interactions may profoundly influence disease outbreaks. However, disease ecology has only begun to integrate interactions between hosts and their food resources (foraging ecology) despite that hosts often encounter their parasites while feeding. A zooplankton-fungal system illustrated this central connection between foraging and transmission. Using(More)
The "dilution effect" concept in disease ecology offers the intriguing possibility that clever manipulation of less competent hosts could reduce disease prevalence in populations of more competent hosts. The basic concept is straightforward: host species vary in suitability (competence) for parasites, and disease transmission decreases when there are more(More)
Dormancy is a common way in which organisms survive environmental conditions that would be lethal to the active individual. However, while dormant, individuals forgo reproduction. Hence theory suggests an optimal time in which to enter dormancy, depending on risks associated with both remaining active and entering dormancy. When these relative risks differ(More)
Parasites steal resources that a host would otherwise direct toward its own growth and reproduction. We use this fundamental notion to explain resource-dependent virulence in a fungal parasite (Metschnikowia)-zooplankton host (Daphnia) system and in a variety of other disease systems with invertebrate hosts. In an experiment, well-fed hosts died faster and(More)