Competition by allelopathy proceeds in traveling waves: Colicin-immune strain aids colicin-sensitive strain

M. Nakamaru, Yoh Iwasa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Producing toxic chemicals to suppress both the growth and survivorship of local competitors is called allelopathy; some strains of the bacteria Escherichia coli produce a toxin (named colicin) which may kill colicin-sensitive neighbors while they themselves are immune. In a previous paper, the competitive outcome between colicin-producing and colicin-sensitive strains was shown to differ between a spatially structured and a completely mixed population. In this paper, we analyze the role of a third, 'colicin-immune,' strain, which does not produce colicin but is immune to it. Without spatial structure, the colicin-immune strain suppresses the colicin-producing strain and enables the colicin-sensitive strain to win. In a spatially structured population, modeled as a reaction-diffusion system, we examine the speed of boundaries between areas dominated by different strains in traveling waves and the events after the collision of two such boundaries. The colicin-immune strain passes through the area dominated by the colicin-sensitive strain and drives the colicin-producing strain to extinction. Subsequently the colicin-sensitive strain occupies the whole population. (C) 2000 Academic Press.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-144
Number of pages14
JournalTheoretical Population Biology
Volume57
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

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