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Host intrinsic determinants and potential consequences of parasite infection in free-ranging red-fronted lemurs (Eulemur fulvus rufus)

Clough, Dagmar LU ; Heistermann, Michael and Kappeler, Peter M. (2010) In American Journal of Physical Anthropology 142(3). p.441-452
Abstract
Parasites and infectious diseases represent ecological forces shaping animal social evolution. Although empirical studies supporting this link abound in various vertebrate orders, both the study of the dynamics and impact of parasite infections and infectious diseases in strepsirrhine primates have received little empirical attention. We conducted a longitudinal parasitological study on four groups of wild red-fronted lemurs (Eulemur fulvus rufus) at Kirindy Forest, Madagascar, during two field seasons in consecutive years to investigate i) the degree of gastrointestinal parasite infection on population and individual levels and ii) factors potentially determining individual infection risk. Using a comprehensive dataset with multiple... (More)
Parasites and infectious diseases represent ecological forces shaping animal social evolution. Although empirical studies supporting this link abound in various vertebrate orders, both the study of the dynamics and impact of parasite infections and infectious diseases in strepsirrhine primates have received little empirical attention. We conducted a longitudinal parasitological study on four groups of wild red-fronted lemurs (Eulemur fulvus rufus) at Kirindy Forest, Madagascar, during two field seasons in consecutive years to investigate i) the degree of gastrointestinal parasite infection on population and individual levels and ii) factors potentially determining individual infection risk. Using a comprehensive dataset with multiple individually assignable parasite samples as well as information on age, sex, group size, social rank, and endocrine status (fecal androgen and glucocorticoid), we examined parasite infection patterns and host traits that may affect individual infection risk. In addition, we examined whether parasite infection affects mating and reproductive success. Our results indicated high variability in parasite infection on individual and population levels. Time of year and group size was important determinants of variability in parasite infection. Variation in hormone levels was also associated with parasite species richness and parasite infection intensity. Differences in parasite infection between years indicate a potential immune-enhancing function of steroid hormones on nematode infections, which has not been reported before from other vertebrates studied under natural conditions. Male mating and reproductive success were not correlated to any measure of parasite infection, which suggests a nonfunctional role of the parasites we examined in primate sexual selection. (Less)
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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
primates, helminth, protozoa, hormones, reproductive success
in
American Journal of Physical Anthropology
volume
142
issue
3
pages
441 - 452
publisher
John Wiley & Sons
external identifiers
  • scopus:77953516563
ISSN
0002-9483
DOI
10.1002/ajpa.21243
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
4be70bf9-7897-4d56-a8ba-dc769c45c56f (old id 4342421)
date added to LUP
2014-03-11 14:39:21
date last changed
2018-06-17 03:21:58
@article{4be70bf9-7897-4d56-a8ba-dc769c45c56f,
  abstract     = {Parasites and infectious diseases represent ecological forces shaping animal social evolution. Although empirical studies supporting this link abound in various vertebrate orders, both the study of the dynamics and impact of parasite infections and infectious diseases in strepsirrhine primates have received little empirical attention. We conducted a longitudinal parasitological study on four groups of wild red-fronted lemurs (Eulemur fulvus rufus) at Kirindy Forest, Madagascar, during two field seasons in consecutive years to investigate i) the degree of gastrointestinal parasite infection on population and individual levels and ii) factors potentially determining individual infection risk. Using a comprehensive dataset with multiple individually assignable parasite samples as well as information on age, sex, group size, social rank, and endocrine status (fecal androgen and glucocorticoid), we examined parasite infection patterns and host traits that may affect individual infection risk. In addition, we examined whether parasite infection affects mating and reproductive success. Our results indicated high variability in parasite infection on individual and population levels. Time of year and group size was important determinants of variability in parasite infection. Variation in hormone levels was also associated with parasite species richness and parasite infection intensity. Differences in parasite infection between years indicate a potential immune-enhancing function of steroid hormones on nematode infections, which has not been reported before from other vertebrates studied under natural conditions. Male mating and reproductive success were not correlated to any measure of parasite infection, which suggests a nonfunctional role of the parasites we examined in primate sexual selection.},
  author       = {Clough, Dagmar and Heistermann, Michael and Kappeler, Peter M.},
  issn         = {0002-9483},
  keyword      = {primates,helminth,protozoa,hormones,reproductive success},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {441--452},
  publisher    = {John Wiley & Sons},
  series       = {American Journal of Physical Anthropology},
  title        = {Host intrinsic determinants and potential consequences of parasite infection in free-ranging red-fronted lemurs (Eulemur fulvus rufus)},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ajpa.21243},
  volume       = {142},
  year         = {2010},
}