Navigation Links
Individuals vary their immune response according to age, sex and the costs

Is it always good to respond maximally when pathogens or disease strike, or should individuals vary their immune response to balance immediate and future costs? This is the question evolutionary physiologists Oliver Love, Katrina Salvante, James Dale, and Tony Williams asked when they examined how a simple immune response varied at different life stages across the life-span of individual zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata), in a study published in the September issue of the American Naturalist.

When transitioning from nest-bound juveniles to adults, female immune responses matured slowly whereas males showed dramatic variation potentially due to the costs of molting into their colorful sexually dimorphic plumage. Adult males showed little variation in immune response despite changes in resource quality. Likewise, when females laid eggs under high-quality resource conditions, immune responses were also consistent with those during non-breeding and similar to male responses. However, when laying on reduced resources females reduced their immune response and their reproductive output consistent with a facultative (resource-driven) effect of reproductive effort on immunity. Moreover, even under high-resource conditions during the chick-rearing stage mothers showed reduced immune responses compared to fathers suggesting a residual energetic cost of egg-laying. Perhaps most importantly, immune responses of juveniles of both sexes did not predict their subsequent adult responses. Immune responses of adult females were only predictable when the quality of the environment remained constant; as soon as conditions deteriorated, individual females required flexibility in both the immune and reproductive systems. However, the degree of flexibility came at a cost as only individuals with high immune responses as non-breeders had the capacity to reduce responses when times became tough. These results underlie the fact that immunity is a highly plastic trait that can be modulated in a sex- and context-dependent manner. Given the need for individual flexibility in the immune system, this suggests that an immune response at one stage may provide limited information about immune response at future stages.


Contact: Patricia Morse
University of Chicago Press Journals

Related biology news :

1. Caltech neurobiologists discover individuals who hear movement
2. Jingle bells not merry for tone-deaf individuals
3. How plants fine tune their natural chemical defenses
4. Old before their time? Aging in flies under natural vs. laboratory conditions
5. Codeine not safe for all breastfeeding moms and their babies
6. Parents shape whether their children learn to eat fruits and vegetables
7. Guilt on their hands: tiny tags could help to solve and deter gun crime
8. Male fish deceive rivals about their top mate choice
9. Syracuse University scientists discover how some bacteria may steal iron from their human hosts
10. Ultrasonic frogs can tune their ears to different frequencies
11. Pregnant mice block out unwelcome admirers to protect their pups
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Individuals vary their immune response according to age, sex and the costs
(Date:11/12/2015)... , Nov. 11, 2015   Growing need ... analytical tools has been paving the way for ... determination of discrete analytes in clinical, agricultural, environmental, ... being predominantly used in medical applications, however, their ... sectors due to continuous emphasis on improving product ...
(Date:11/10/2015)... , Nov. 10, 2015 ... behavioral biometrics that helps to identify and verify ... Signature is considered as the secure and accurate ... identification of a particular individual because each individual,s ... accurate results especially when dynamic signature of an ...
(Date:11/4/2015)... , November 4, 2015 ... new market report published by Transparency Market Research "Home Security ... Trends and Forecast 2015 - 2022", the global home security ... 30.3 bn by 2022. The market is estimated to ... period from 2015 to 2022. Rising security needs among ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... ... The United States Golf Association (USGA) today announced Dr. Bruce Clarke, of ... since 1961, the USGA Green Section Award recognizes an individual’s distinguished service to the ... of Iselin, N.J., is an extension specialist of turfgrass pathology in the department of ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering ... premier annual events for pharmaceutical manufacturing: 2015 Annual Meeting. The conference took place ... the largest number of attendees in more than a decade. , “The ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 24, 2015 , ... The Academy ... Special Interest Group (SIG), MultiGP, also known as Multirotor Grand Prix, to represent the ... last few years. Many AMA members have embraced this type of racing and several ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24, 2015  Twist Bioscience, a company focused ... Ph.D., Twist Bioscience chief executive officer, will present ... December 1, 2015 at 3:10 p.m. Eastern Time at The ... --> --> ... Bioscience is on Twitter. Sign up to follow ...
Breaking Biology Technology: