that cooperation can be promoted. One answer involves the physical structure of the environment. For example, microorganisms growing on substrates are more likely to be in contact with clonemates than those living in a more fluid environment. Another possibility, and one investigated by Sara Mitri and colleagues in Chapter 7, is that other species can generate structure that favors within-species clonality. The authors use a modeling approach to understand how additional species can change interactions within species for the case of a growth-promoting secretion. This agent-based modeling approach uses one other species to stand in for all competing species. The authors’ models indicate that other species can insulate secretors from selfish nonsecretors, even when the other species can use the secretions themselves. Other factors such as the role of dispersal and nutrient levels are also addressed in these models, which begin the important task of considering microbial sociality and ecology simultaneously, because these factors must influence how selection operates on these systems in nature.
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"Part II: COOPERATION WRIT SMALL: MICROBES."
In the Light of Evolution: Volume V: Cooperation and Conflict.
Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2012.
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