The amphipod crustacean Gammarus duebeni hosts two species of vertically transmitted microsporidian parasites, Nosema granulosis and Microsporidium sp. A. Here it is demonstrated that these co-occurring parasite species both cause infected females to produce female-biased broods. A survey of European G. duebeni populations demonstrates that these two parasites co-occur in six of 10 populations. These findings contrast with the theoretical prediction that two vertically transmitted feminizing parasites should not coexist in a panmictic population of susceptible hosts at equilibrium. Possible explanations for the co-occurrence of the two feminizing microsporidia in G. duebeni include the recent invasion of a new parasite, horizontal transmission of one or both parasites and the spread of alleles for resistance to the dominant parasite in host populations.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Journal of Evolutionary Biology|
|Early online date||17 Apr 2003|
|Publication status||Published - May 2003|
- Gammarus duebeni