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Modeling nutrient and disease dynamics in a plant-pathogen system

1 Department of Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science, St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN 55057, USA
2 Agronomy Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA
3 Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN 55108, USA
4 School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287, USA

Special Issues: Resource Explicit Population Models

Human activities alter elemental nutrient cycling, which can have profound impacts on agriculture, grasslands, lakes, and other systems. It is becoming increasingly clear that enhanced nitrogen and phosphorus levels can affect disease dynamics across a range of taxa. However, there are few mathematical models that explicitly incorporate nutrients into host-pathogen interactions. Using viral load and plant mass data from an experiment with cereal yellow dwarf virus and its host plant, Avena sativa, we propose and compare two models describing the overall infection dynamics. However, the first model considers nutrient-limited virus production while the other considers a nutrient-induced viral production delay. A virus reproduction number is derived for this nutrient model, which depends on environmental and physiological attributes. Results suggest that including nutrient mediated viral production mechanisms can give rise to robust models that can be used to untangle how nutrients impact pathogen dynamics.
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Keywords disease ecology; droop equation; delay differential equation; within-host; cereal yellow dwarf viruses

Citation: Bruce Pell, Amy E. Kendig, Elizabeth T. Borer, Yang Kuang. Modeling nutrient and disease dynamics in a plant-pathogen system. Mathematical Biosciences and Engineering, 2019, 16(1): 234-264. doi: 10.3934/mbe.2019013

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