Report

Survival for Immunity: The Price of Immune System Activation for Bumblebee Workers

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  10 Nov 2000:
Vol. 290, Issue 5494, pp. 1166-1168
DOI: 10.1126/science.290.5494.1166

You are currently viewing the abstract.

View Full Text

Log in to view the full text

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution

Abstract

Parasites do not always harm their hosts because the immune system keeps an infection at bay. Ironically, the cost of using immune defenses could itself reduce host fitness. This indirect cost of parasitism is often not visible because of compensatory resource intake. Here, workers of the bumblebee, Bombus terrestris, were challenged with lipopolysaccharides and micro–latex beads to induce their immune system under starvation (i.e., not allowing compensatory intake). Compared with controls, survival of induced workers was significantly reduced (by 50 to 70%).

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: moret{at}eco.umnw.ethz.ch

View Full Text