Altruism and social cheating in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum

@article{Strassmann2000AltruismAS,
  title={Altruism and social cheating in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum},
  author={Joan E. Strassmann and Yong Zhu and David C. Queller},
  journal={Nature},
  year={2000},
  volume={408},
  pages={965-967}
}
The social amoeba, Dictyostelium discoideum, is widely used as a simple model organism for multicellular development, but its multicellular fruiting stage is really a society. Most of the time, D. discoideum lives as haploid, free-living, amoeboid cells that divide asexually. When starved, 104–105 of these cells aggregate into a slug. The anterior 20% of the slug altruistically differentiates into a non-viable stalk, supporting the remaining cells, most of which become viable spores. If… 
Cooperation and conflict in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum.
TLDR
D. discoideum's tractability in the laboratory as well as its uncommon mode of aggregative multicellularity have established it as a promising model for future studies of cooperation and conflict.
Rapid antagonistic coevolution between strains of the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum
  • B. Hollis
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2012
TLDR
The results of an experimental evolution study designed to test whether clones of D. discoideum will evolve resistance to cheating in the laboratory with genetic variation created only through spontaneous mutation show strong antagonism between strains, mediated by ample mutational variation for cheating.
Migration in the social stage of Dictyostelium discoideum amoebae impacts competition
TLDR
Results show that migration can alleviate the conflict of interests in heterogeneous slugs, which aligns their interest in finding a more advantageous place for dispersal, where shorter stalks suffice, which leads to a decrease in cheating behavior.
Evolution of cooperation and control of cheating in a social microbe
TLDR
It is shown that studying a microbe has yielded unique insights, particularly in understanding how social cheaters are controlled, and that D. discoideum is rapidly becoming a model system of choice for molecular studies of social evolution.
Social behaviour in genetically heterogeneous groups of Dictyostelium giganteum
TLDR
Comparing indices of altruistic behaviour between clonal and chimeric (genetically heterogeneous) social groups found that the allocation of cells to the stalk pathway would be higher, and to the spore pathway lower, in clonal social groups than in chimeras.
A new social gene in Dictyostelium discoideum, chtB
TLDR
A new gene is described in D. discoideum, chtB, which when knocked out inhibits the parental strain from producing spores and is characterized from a screen for cheater mutants that were also able to form normal fruiting bodies on their own.
Social Conflicts in Dictyostelium discoideum : A Matter of Scales
TLDR
A set of open questions are proposed that in this review lie at the core of a multi-scale description of aggregative life cycles, where the formulation of predictive evolutionary models would include cell-level mechanisms responsible for spore bias alongside population-level descriptors of multicellular organization.
How social evolution theory impacts our understanding of development in the social amoeba Dictyostelium
TLDR
There is a promising future for research at the interface of development and social evolution in this fascinating group of cells, so it is important to measure relatedness in nature, show that it has an impact on cooperation in the laboratory, and investigate genes that Dictyostelium uses to discriminate between relatives and non‐relatives.
Kin Discrimination in Dictyostelium Social Amoebae
TLDR
It is a puzzle that these genes do not cause stronger discrimination between mixed wild clones, but laboratory conditions or strong sorting early in the social stage diminished by later slug fusion could be explanations.
Kin Discrimination Increases with Genetic Distance in a Social Amoeba
TLDR
It is demonstrated that D. discoideum cells co-aggregate more with genetically similar than dissimilar individuals, suggesting the existence of a mechanism that discerns the degree of genetic similarity between individuals in this social microorganism.
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