Journal article

Energetic scaling across different host densities and its consequences for pathogen proliferation

Louise Solveig Norgaard, Giulia Ghedini, Ben L Phillips, Matthew D Hall



The spread of infectious disease is determined by the ability of a pathogen to proliferate within and spread between susceptible hosts. Processes that limit the performance of a pathogen thus occur at two scales: varying with both the availability of energy within a host, and the number of susceptible hosts in a patch. When the rate at which a host intakes and expends energy is density-dependent, these two processes are intimately linked. By modifying how hosts compete for and expend resources, a shift in population density may contribute to differences in the flow of energy in a host–pathogen system, both in terms of the energy available for a host to grow, reproduce and fight infection, as..

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University of Melbourne Researchers