Browsing by Subject "population bottleneck"

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  • Ghafari, Mahan; Lumby, Casper K.; Weissman, Daniel B.; Illingworth, Christopher J. R. (2020)
    The transmission bottleneck is defined as the number of viral particles that transmit from one host to establish an infection in another. Genome sequence data have been used to evaluate the size of the transmission bottleneck between humans infected with the influenza virus; however, the methods used to make these estimates have some limitations. Specifically, viral allele frequencies, which form the basis of many calculations, may not fully capture a process which involves the transmission of entire viral genomes. Here, we set out a novel approach for inferring viral transmission bottlenecks; our method combines an algorithm for haplotype reconstruction with maximum likelihood methods for bottleneck inference. This approach allows for rapid calculation and performs well when applied to data from simulated transmission events; errors in the haplotype reconstruction step did not adversely affect inferences of the population bottleneck. Applied to data from a previous household transmission study of influenza A infection, we confirm the result that the majority of transmission events involve a small number of viruses, albeit with slightly looser bottlenecks being inferred, with between 1 and 13 particles transmitted in the majority of cases. While influenza A transmission involves a tight population bottleneck, the bottleneck is not so tight as to universally prevent the transmission of within-host viral diversity. IMPORTANCE Viral populations undergo a repeated cycle of within-host growth followed by transmission. Viral evolution is affected by each stage of this cycle. The number of viral particles transmitted from one host to another, known as the transmission bottleneck, is an important factor in determining how the evolutionary dynamics of the population play out, restricting the extent to which the evolved diversity of the population can be passed from one host to another. Previous study of viral sequence data has suggested that the transmission bottleneck size for influenza A transmission between human hosts is small. Reevaluating these data using a novel and improved method, we largely confirm this result, albeit that we infer a slightly higher bottleneck size in some cases, of between 1 and 13 virions. While a tight bottleneck operates in human influenza transmission, it is not extreme in nature; some diversity can be meaningfully retained between hosts.
  • Nonaka, Etsuko; Kaitala, Veijo (2020)
    Many parasitoids have single-locus complementary sex determination (sl-CSD), which produces sterile or inviable males when homozygous at the sex determining locus. A previous study theoretically showed that small populations have elevated risks of extinction due to the positive feedback between inbreeding and small population size, referred to as the diploid male vortex. A few modeling studies have suggested that the diploid male vortex may not be as common because balancing selection at sex determining loci tends to maintain high allelic diversity in spatially structured populations. However, the generality of the conclusion is yet uncertain, as they were drawn either from models developed for particular systems or from a general-purpose competition model. To attest the conclusion, we study several well-studied host-parasitoid models that incorporate functional response specifying the number of attacked hosts given a host density and derive the conditions for a diploid male vortex in a single population. Then, we develop spatially structured individual-based versions of the models to include female behavior, diploid male fertility, and temporal fluctuations. The results show that producing a handful of successful offspring per female parasitoid could enable parasitoid persistence when a typical number of CSD alleles are present. The effect of functional response depends on the levels of fluctuations in host abundance, and inviable or partially fertile diploid males and a small increase in dispersal can alleviate the risk of a diploid male vortex. Our work supports the generality of effective genetic rescue in spatially connected parasitoid populations with sl-CSD. However, under more variable climate, the efficacy of the CSD mechanism may substantially decline.