Ants Share Pathogens for Immunity

Ants Share Pathogens for Immunity

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Ants put an active effort into developing social immunity, the phenomenon whereby contact with infected individuals can confer resistance to the community, according to a study published in PLoS Biology. Ants will groom their fungus-infected nestmates more, which promotes minor fungal infections that spur a fungus-specific immune response, similar to “chickenpox parties” popular before the development of the chickenpox vaccine.

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