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Heterozygosity but not inbreeding coefficient predicts parasite burdens in the banded mongoose

Mitchell, J and Vitikainen, EIK and Wells, DA and Cant, MA and Nichols, HJ (2016) Heterozygosity but not inbreeding coefficient predicts parasite burdens in the banded mongoose. Journal of Zoology. ISSN 0952-8369

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Abstract

Inbreeding, reproduction between relatives, often impinges on the health and survival of resulting offspring. Such inbreeding depression may manifest itself through immunological costs as inbred individuals suffer increased propensity to disease, infection and parasites compared to outbred conspecifics. Here, we assess how the intestinal parasite loads of wild banded mongooses (Mungos mungo) vary with pedigree inbreeding coefficient (f) and standardized multi-locus heterozygosity. We find a significant association between increased heterozygosity and lower parasite loads; however, this correlation does not stand when considering f. Such findings may be explained by local genetic effects, linkage between genetic markers and genes influencing parasite burdens. Indeed, we find heterozygosity at certain loci to correlate with parasite load. Although these tentative local effects are lost following multiple test correction, they warrant future investigation to determine their strength and impact. We also suggest frequent inbreeding within banded mongooses may mean heterozygosity is a better predictor of inbreeding than pedigree f. This is because inbreeding facilitates linkage disequilibrium, increasing the chances of neutral markers representing genome-wide heterozygosity. Finally, neither f nor heterozygosity had a significant influence on the loads of two specific gastrointestinal parasites. Nevertheless, more heterozygous individuals benefited from reduced overall parasitic infection and genetic diversity appears to explain some variation in parasite burdens in the banded mongoose. © 2016 The Zoological Society of London.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Mitchell, J., Vitikainen, E. I. K., Wells, D. A., Cant, M. A. and Nichols, H. J. (2016), Heterozygosity but not inbreeding coefficient predicts parasite burdens in the banded mongoose. J Zool. doi:10.1111/jzo.12424 which has been published in final form at http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jzo.12424 This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 06 Biological Sciences, 05 Environmental Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Q Science > QL Zoology
Divisions: Natural Sciences and Psychology
Publisher: Wiley
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2017 11:07
Last Modified: 10 Sep 2017 13:26
DOI or Identification number: 10.1111/jzo.12424
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/5219

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