Skip to main content
Dryad logo

Data from: Tapeworm manipulation of copepod behaviour: parasite genotype has a larger effect than host genotype

Citation

Benesh, Daniel (2019), Data from: Tapeworm manipulation of copepod behaviour: parasite genotype has a larger effect than host genotype, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.v41d698

Abstract

Compared to uninfected individuals, infected animals can exhibit altered phenotypes. The changes often appear beneficial to parasites, leading to the notion that modified host phenotypes are extended parasite phenotypes, shaped by parasite genes. However, the phenotype of a parasitized individual may reflect parasitic manipulation, host responses to infection, or both, and disentangling the contribution of parasite genes versus host genes to these altered phenotypes is challenging. Using a tapeworm (Schistocephalus solidus) infecting its copepod first intermediate host, I performed a full-factorial, cross-infection experiment with five host and five parasite genotypes. I found that a behavioural trait modified by infection, copepod activity, was affected by both host and parasite genotype. There was not clear evidence for host genotype by parasite genotype interactions. Several observations indicated that host behaviour was chiefly determined by parasite genes: 1) all infected copepods, regardless of host or parasite genotype, exhibited behavioural changes, 2) parasitism reduced the differences among copepod genotypes, and 3) within infected copepods, parasite genotype had twice as large an effect on behaviour as host genotype. I conclude that the altered behaviour of infected copepods primarily represents an extended parasite phenotype, and I discuss how genetic variation in parasitic host manipulation could be maintained.

Usage Notes