NadpisAre non-sexual models appropriate for predicting the impact of virus-vectored immunocontraception?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AutořiDeredec, A, Berec, L, David S. Boukal, Courchamp, F
Klíčová slovabiological control, mammal pest, population dynamics, sterilization, Two-sex model

In response to the need to efficiently control mammal pest populations while avoiding unnecessary suffering, applied and theoretical ecologists have recently focused on virus-vectored immunocontraception (VVIC). So far, modellers have only considered a non-sexual approach (models of sexually reproducing populations without explicitly discerning between the sexes), which appears dubious in view of the sex-specificity of VVIC agents. In this paper, we derive and compare predictions of non-sexual and two-sex models of the spread of a VVIC agent in a host population in order to assess the adequacy of non-sexual models in this context. Our results show that predictions of non-sexual and two-sex models generally diverge and that non-sexual models often fail to predict the control impact of VVIC. We thus recommend using two-sex models, especially if the mating system and life history of the target species are known. Our analysis also shows that female-specific viruses generally give better results than male-specific ones, and suggests that virus choice should focus more on its sterilizing power rather than transmission efficiency. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.