gene-for-gene co-evolution

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A form of co-evolution in which the virulence of a pathogen and the response of its host are governed by corresponding genes in the two organisms: resistance to a pathogen depends on the presence of both a resistance gene in the host and an avirulence gene in the pathogen. Evidence for the phenomenon has been found in associations between crop plants and pathogens, including grasses, herbs, shrubs, and trees, and fungi, viruses, and bacteria. It may also occur between plants and nematodes (Nematoda) or insects.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation.

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