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Evolution of parasites

A success story

>Appeared 223 times !

>More than half the species on earth !

Quick numbers

What evolutionary processes led to the success of parasitic life ?

"It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change, that lives within the means available and works cooperatively against common threats"

Charles Darwin : The origin of species

1-Natural Selection

>Nature is not staying still
>Only advantageous traits are kept !

2-The appeal of parasitism

2-The appeal of parasitism

3-Adapting to the host

  • 250 millions years old relationship !

  • Coevolution

  • Specialization

100 species of parasites specialized to man !

3-Adapting to the host

> Diversity of Business

Parasitic Fungi example

Stem rust example

Living an independant life !

(Here represented by the structure of infection)

4-The downfall of parasites ?

One big weakness :

Every 5 minutes, a species goes extinct :



Thanks for your attention!

Hugo Dupuy
Senior Researcher.
Parasitologist at the INRA