HS 2018: LV 28394-01

Evolution of host parasite interactions

Lecture with exercises (2KP)


Day, time and location

Course description

The main goal of the course is to provide an in depth treatment of concepts, examples and methods in evolutionary biology of host-parasite interactions. The course starts with an introduction into basic evolutionary biology of parasitism. Transmission of infectious diseases and its relation to parasite fitness will be treated in depth. A further emphasize will be on the evolution of immune systems. From there we approach questions about parasite and pathogen evolution as well as host-parasite coevolution. The evolution of virulence and the role of transmission will receive special consideration. The back bone of the course are lectures. In the lectures we introduce the concepts and their theoretical background, explain methods and use examples from current research.

The book "Evolutionary parasitology" by Paul Schmid-Hempel (Oxford University Press, 2011) is a good textbook for the course. It does not include all aspects treated in the course.


To pass this course and obtain the corresponding credit points, participation is required, an essay has to be written and the written final exam has to be passed. The essay counts 1/3 of the final grade, the exam 2/3.


To pass this course and obtain the corresponding credit points, an essay has to be written. Here are some guide lines for the essay

Downloads (pdf with the power point slides)

The slides from the powerpoint used during the lectures as safed in pdf format. The script comes in 2 versions, with 1 slide or 4 slides per page. 4 slides per page is better for printing. PDF files with 1 slide per page is best for viewing on screen. The pdf will be uploaded latest 3 days before a lecture. If you have a problems with downloading a file, please contact Dieter Ebert by email as soon as possible.

PDF files of slides used by Dieter Ebert

PDF files of papers used by Dieter Ebert

PDF files of slides used by Louis Du Pasquier