Harbouring public good mutants within a pathogen population can increase both fitness and virulence

@inproceedings{Lindsay2016HarbouringPG,
  title={Harbouring public good mutants within a pathogen population can increase both fitness and virulence},
  author={Richard J Lindsay and Michael J. Kershaw and Bogna Julia Pawlowska and Nicholas J. Talbot and Ivana Gudelj},
  booktitle={eLife},
  year={2016}
}
Existing theory, empirical, clinical and field research all predict that reducing the virulence of individuals within a pathogen population will reduce the overall virulence, rendering disease less severe. Here, we show that this seemingly successful disease management strategy can fail with devastating consequences for infected hosts. We deploy cooperation theory and a novel synthetic system involving the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae. In vivo infections of rice demonstrate that M… CONTINUE READING

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