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Compatibility and sex in a snail–schistosome system

  • J. P. WEBSTER (a1)

Abstract

Knowledge of the genetics underlying resistance to parasitic infection has important repercussions for our understanding of infection dynamics and the mechanisms of host–parasite co-evolution. The aim here was to determine for a Biomphalaria glabrata–Schistosoma mansoni system whether (1) resistance is dominant over susceptibility, (2) it is possible to crossbreed snails to be simultaneously resistant and/or susceptible to more than one parasite strain and (3) compatibility genotype affects reproductive strategy. Using replicate snail strains artificially selected for either resistance or susceptibility to single replicate parasite strains, individual snails from each line were paired with a selected partner of matched or non-matched compatibility status and cross-breeding was identified by RAPD–PCR. The resulting compatibility phenotype of all offspring was determined. Support for all 3 hypotheses were obtained. The results are discussed in terms of their applied and theoretical implications.

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Corresponding author

Corresponding author: Tel: +01865 271288. Fax: +01865 281245. E-mail: joanne.webster@wellcome-epidemiology.oxford.ac.uk

Keywords

Compatibility and sex in a snail–schistosome system

  • J. P. WEBSTER (a1)

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