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Leishmania and the Model of Predominant Clonal Evolution

Tibayrenc, M.; Ayala, F.J.

Abstract: As it is the case for other pathogenic microorganisms, the respective impact of clonality and genetic exchange on Leishmania natural populations has been the object of lively debates since the early 1980s. The predominant clonal evolution (PCE) model states that genetic exchange in these parasites’ natural populations may have a high relevance on an evolutionary scale, but is not sufficient to erase a persistent phylogenetic signal and the existence of bifurcating trees. Recent data based on high-resolution markers and genomic polymorphisms fully confirm the PCE model down to a microevolutionary level.

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