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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/20552

Title: Evolutionary control of infectious disease: Prospects for vectorborne and waterborne pathogens
Authors: Ewald, Paul W.
Sussman, Jeremy B.
Distler, Matthew T.
Libel, Camila
Chammas, Wahid P.
Dirita, Victor J.
Salles, Carlos André
Vicente, Ana Carolina Paulo
Heitmann, Ingrid
Cabello, Felipe
Keywords: infectious diseases - control - pathogens - waterborne transmission
Issue Date: 31-Dec-1998
Publisher: Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
Citation: Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz (ISSN: 1678-8060) Vol 93 Num 5
Abstract: Evolutionary theory may contribute to practical solutions for control of disease by identifying interventions that may cause pathogens to evolve to reduced virulence. Theory predicts, for example, that pathogens transmitted by water or arthropod vectors should evolve to relatively high levels of virulence because such pathogens can gain the evolutionary benefits of relatively high levels of host exploitation while paying little price from host illness. The entrance of Vibrio cholerae into South America in 1991 has generated a natural experiment that allows testing of this idea by determining whether geographic and temporal variations in toxigenicity correspond to variation in the potential for waterborne transmission. Preliminary studies show such correspondences: toxigenicity is negatively associated with access to uncontaminated water in Brazil; and in Chile, where the potential for waterborne transmission is particularly low, toxigenicity of strains declined between 1991 and 1998. In theory vector-proofing of houses should be similarly associated with benignity of vectorborne pathogens, such as the agents of dengue, malaria, and Chagas' disease. These preliminary studies draw attention to the need for definitive prospective experiments to determine whether interventions such as provisioning of uncontaminated water and vector-proofing of houses cause evolutionary reductions in virulence.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/20552
Other Identifiers: http://www.bioline.org.br/abstract?id=oc98110
Rights: Copyright 1998 Fundacao Oswaldo Cruz - Fiocruz
Appears in Collections:Bioline International Legacy Collection

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