Host behaviour and physiology underpin individual variation in avian influenza virus infection in migratory Bewick's swans

Hoye, Bethany J., Fouchier, Ron A. M. and Klaassen, Marcel 2012, Host behaviour and physiology underpin individual variation in avian influenza virus infection in migratory Bewick's swans, Proceedings of the Royal Society B : biological sciences, vol. 279, no. 1728, pp. 529-534.

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Title Host behaviour and physiology underpin individual variation in avian influenza virus infection in migratory Bewick's swans
Author(s) Hoye, Bethany J.
Fouchier, Ron A. M.
Klaassen, Marcel
Journal name Proceedings of the Royal Society B : biological sciences
Volume number 279
Issue number 1728
Start page 529
End page 534
Total pages 6
Publisher Royal Society Publishing
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 2012-02-07
ISSN 0962-8452
Keyword(s) antibody
habitat use
host-parasite interactions
nucleoprotein
Predisposition
Zoonotic
Summary Individual variation in infection modulates both the dynamics of pathogens and their impact on host populations. It is therefore crucial to identify differential patterns of infection and understand the mechanisms responsible. Yet our understanding of infection heterogeneity in wildlife is limited, even for important zoonotic host-pathogen systems, owing to the intractability of host status prior to infection. Using novel applications of stable isotope ecology and eco-immunology, we distinguish antecedent behavioural and physiological traits associated with avian influenza virus (AIV) infection in free-living Bewick's swans (Cygnus columbianus bewickii). Swans infected with AIV exhibited higher serum δ13C (-25.3 ± 0.4) than their non-infected counterparts (-26.3±0.2). Thus, individuals preferentially foraging in aquatic rather than terrestrial habitats experienced a higher risk of infection, suggesting that the abiotic requirements of AIV give rise to heterogeneity in pathogen exposure. Juveniles were more likely to be infected (30.8% compared with 11.3% for adults), shed approximately 15-fold higher quantity of virus and exhibited a lower specific immune response than adults. Together, these results demonstrate the potential for heterogeneity in infection to have a profound influence on the dynamics of pathogens, with concomitant impacts on host habitat selection and fitness.
Language eng
Field of Research 060299 Ecology not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2011, The Royal Society
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30044379

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Life and Environmental Sciences
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