Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Can Interacting Pathogens Explain Disease Patterns?

Date:
December 14, 2007
Source:
Cardiff University
Summary:
Interaction of parasites may help predict outbreaks of infectious diseases. This could lead to predicting more successfully when infectious cyclical diseases in humans are likely to occur.

A new study into the way in which parasites interact with each other could help predict when infectious diseases are likely to break out.

Related Articles


A group of scientists in the UK and the US has been studying the behaviour of infectious parasites in rabbits. The findings could lead to us being able to predict more successfully when infectious cyclical diseases in humans are likely to occur.

The team from Cardiff University's School of Biosciences, University of Stirling, University of Liverpool and Penn State University, Pennsylvania, have discovered that when rabbits are infected with more than one disease at a time, the diseases can interact with each other, changing their courses and potentially resulting in a more severe infection.

Most animals including humans are infected with more than one disease at any one time.

The research findings point to the possibility that any disease which follows a natural cycle could have that cycle changed by an interaction with another disease.

Dr Joanne Lello, Cardiff School of Biosciences, said that the findings provide a new way of looking for interactions between organisms which cause disease and provides another piece in the puzzle in terms of understanding how pathogens behave.

She said: "There has been a long standing debate as to whether co-infecting organisms interact with one another or whether interactions matter in natural pathogen systems. The debate continues because these interactions are so hard to detect in nature.

"What this study has provided us with is a new method of detection. For example, when we test this method on real data, such as where we examine changes in parasitic worm numbers in rabbits, it reveals changes in seasonal patterns of one type of worm when another type is present.

"Many diseases show cycles and if interactions change these cycles then there could be wide-ranging consequences and understanding this can help us better understand pathogen patterns. For example it could help scientists to predict more clearly when parasite outbreaks may occur."

"The whole subject of co-infection biology is very exciting as it has implications for everything from theoretical biology to how we treat infectious diseases."

The study is detailed in the leading scientific journal American Naturalist.

The paper "Pathogen interactions, population cycles and phase shifts" is published in The American Naturalist in January.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cardiff University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cardiff University. "Can Interacting Pathogens Explain Disease Patterns?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071212201328.htm>.
Cardiff University. (2007, December 14). Can Interacting Pathogens Explain Disease Patterns?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071212201328.htm
Cardiff University. "Can Interacting Pathogens Explain Disease Patterns?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071212201328.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A team of scientists led by Danish chemist Jorn Christensen says they have isolated two chemical compounds within an existing antipsychotic medication that could be used to help a range of failing antibiotics work against killer bacterial infections, such as Tuberculosis. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Millions of monarch butterflies begin to descend onto Mexico as part of their annual migration south. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins