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1 May 2006 IMPERFECT VACCINES AND THE EVOLUTION OF PATHOGENS CAUSING ACUTE INFECTIONS IN VERTEBRATES
Vitaly V. Ganusov, Rustom Antia
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Abstract

A study by Gandon et al. (2001) considered the potential ways pathogens may evolve in response to vaccination with imperfect vaccines. In this paper, by focusing on acute infections of vertebrate hosts, we examine whether imperfect vaccines that do not completely block a pathogen's replication (antigrowth) or transmission (antitransmission) may lead to evolution of more or less virulent pathogen strains. To address this question, we use models of the within-host dynamics of the pathogen and the host's immune responses. One advantage of the use of this within-host approach is that vaccination can be easily incorporated in the models and the trade-offs between pathogen transmissibility, host recovery, and virulence that drive evolution of pathogens in these models can be easily estimated. We find that the use of either antigrowth or antitransmission vaccines leads to the evolution of pathogens with an increased within-host growth rate; infection of unvaccinated hosts with such evolved pathogens results in high host mortality and low pathogen transmission. Vaccination of only a fraction of hosts with antigrowth vaccines may prevent pathogens from evolving high virulence due to pathogen adaptation to unvaccinated hosts and thus protection of vaccinated hosts from pathogen-induced disease. In contrast, antitransmission vaccines may be beneficial only if they are effective enough to cause pathogen extinction. Our results suggest that particular mechanisms of action of vaccines and their efficacy are crucial in predicting longterm evolutionary consequences of the use of imperfect vaccines.

Vitaly V. Ganusov and Rustom Antia "IMPERFECT VACCINES AND THE EVOLUTION OF PATHOGENS CAUSING ACUTE INFECTIONS IN VERTEBRATES," Evolution 60(5), 957-969, (1 May 2006). https://doi.org/10.1554/05-504.1
Received: 6 September 2005; Accepted: 20 February 2006; Published: 1 May 2006
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KEYWORDS
Acute infection
evolution of virulence
immune response
imperfect vaccines
mathematical models
within-host dynamics
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