Parasitism: The Diversity and Ecology of Animal Parasites 2nd Edition. In this second edition, we stay true to the philosophical approach that was adopted in the ﬁrst.
Parasitism: The Diversity and Ecology of Animal Parasites 2nd Edition
Thus, we continue to see a need for a single text with dual focus on the diversity and ecology/evolution of parasites. At the core, we feel that an ideal strategy for senior under-graduate and beginning graduate students to under-stand and appreciate breakthroughs in parasite ecology is through a solid understanding of parallel advances in parasite diversity, life-cycle variation, systematics, and functional morphology. By way of example, we suggest that an understanding of the role of falciparum malaria in determining the worldwide distribution of the human sickle-cell gene, and thus the role of parasites in mediating natural selection (Chapter 16), comes from an understanding of life-cycle variation, functional morphology, and biodiversity of the apicomplexans (Chapter 3). Likewise, real understanding of the evidence in support of the para-site hypothesis for the evolution and maintenance of sexual reproduction in molluscs (Chapter 16) comes from a detailed understanding of variation in life cycles and life histories of the platyhelminths (Chapter 6). This dual focus, under one cover, is the hallmark of this text.
Our aim is to provide students with a synthetic understanding of the biodiversity, ecology, and evolution of animal parasites. Thus, throughout most of the text, we unabashedly take a parasite-centered view of the phenomenon of parasitism. Yet, we also aim to provide insights on the nature of the host–parasite interaction itself. It is for this reason that following a brief introductory chapter, we provide an overview of vertebrate and invertebrate immunity, and the new discipline of ecological immunology. We turn again and again to the importance of fundamental immunological principles throughout the text.
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