Understanding the relationship between multiple infections of symbionts and how they affect the microbiota
In nature, infections that consist of multiple parasite strains are common and are of major public health concern. Theory suggests that these infections have a huge influence on the evolution of infectious diseases. Recently, there has been growing interest in what shapes taxa moving from mutualist to parasite. The goal of my research is to explore this question and look at the relationship between multiple infections of symbionts, in particular non-pathogenic bacteria. Understanding these key interactions will help explain the complicated workings of the transition of microbiota from commensals to bacteria.