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Title: The effect of canid sociality on disease transmission: An evaluation of canine distemper virus and canine parvovirus prevalence among various canid species
Authors: Hernandez, Cecilia E.
Advisors: Dobson, Andrew P.
Department: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Class Year: 2014
Abstract: Many epidemiological studies have illuminated the relationship between disease transmission and canid host populations, establishing ecological, environmental and physiological factors as contributing to the success of pathogen transmission. While the influence of sociality on transmission dynamics is well understood, the effects of differential pressures from varying degrees of sociality have not been investigated. Thus, this study investigates how canid sociality affects parasite transmission opportunities as reflected by the diversity and prevalence of pathogens among various species. Seroprevalence data of canine distemper virus (CDV) and canine parvovirus (CPV) for seven canid species of various social systems [African Wild Dog (Lycaon pictus), Gray Wolf (Canis lupus), Coyote (Canis latrans), Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes), Black-backed Jackal (Canis mesomelas), Kit Fox (Vulpes macrotis) and Maned Wolf (Chrysochyon brachyurus)] were compiled from existing research. Analysis revealed significant variance due to social systems for both CDV and CPV; however, the variance component for CDV was negative, consequently bringing into question the reliability of the test. The relative prevalences of both pathogens among the social systems were inconsistent with the expectation that disease transmission is higher in more social species. Overall, CPV appears to have a consistently high prevalence across all social systems, where as CDV is variable, suggesting that CPV can be transmitted efficiently regardless of the social system. Further elucidation of the relationship between sociality and disease transmission will provide a better understanding of the relative benefits provided by certain social systems given the relative cost of disease prevalence a species is willing to tolerate.
Extent: 47 pages
Type of Material: Princeton University Senior Theses
Language: en_US
Appears in Collections:Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, 1992-2017

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