In a recent paper that appeared in The American Naturalist, MSI PI Allison Shaw, an assistant professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, and her colleague Sandra Binning in Switzerland described a mathematical model that allowed the researchers to vary costs and benefits of various factors. These included migration, parasites, lifespan, reproduction rate, and others. The research studied whether migration might have become evolutionarily attractive because it provides an opportunity to shed parasites. The paper can be found on the journal website: Migratory Recovery From Infection as a Selective Pressure for the Evolution of Migration.
Professor Shaw uses MSI resources to run the computationally intensive models she develops to simulate organismal movement. An article about this paper also appears on the College of Biological Sciences Connect blog: The Tapeworm Made Me Do It.