Hamiltonian Medicine: Why the Social Lives of Pathogens Matter

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Science  27 May 2005:
Vol. 308, Issue 5726, pp. 1269-1270
DOI: 10.1126/science.1108158

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The virulence of bacterial colonies often increases when the members of the colony are more highly related. Foster explains how kin selection theory can be used to analyze this phenomenon and discusses the characteristics of bacteria that enable them to benefit from living among their relatives.