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Social networks as a trade-off between optimal information transmission and reduced disease transmission

Abstract : Social structure can theoretically regulate information transmission and disease risk via social contact or proximity. In theory, the same network properties that favor information transmission also favor pathogen transmission creating a potential trade-off between them. In my thesis, I used empirical data, network analysis and individual-based modelling to understand the influence of social structure on social transmission in primate and theoretical networks. My studies show that i) central Japanese macaques transmit disease faster but are also more prone to acquiring infectious agents; ii) the number of infected individuals in 40 wild primate groups is dependent on global network properties and epidemic time; iii) network efficiency peaks with intermediate values of group substructure in theoretical and empirical networks; and, iv) variation in the network properties is a consequence of individual decisions given the trade-offs between collecting information and avoiding infection. Altogether, my thesis reveals the mechanisms of social transmission and indicates that network properties might reflect a trade-off between information and pathogen transmission.
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Valéria Romano de Paula. Social networks as a trade-off between optimal information transmission and reduced disease transmission. Animal biology. Université de Strasbourg, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017STRAJ056⟩. ⟨tel-02003592⟩

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