Relationship between two species and viruses by genetic reassortment

I.

In California, Pacific Northern rattlesnakes prey on California ground squirrels. Their relationship is a great example of co-evolution. Read the article about their relationship found at https://news.osu.edu/how-is-rattlesnake-venom-like-fine-wine-both-have-regional-varieties/, and then address the following questions:

  • Explain why the relationship between these two species is considered an example of co-evolution.
  • What did you find most interesting or significant about how the rattlesnake population adapts to the squirrel’s defenses against its venom?

II.

Read the following recent article from MIT News about tracking the spread of bird flu that discusses the impact of reassortment: http://news.mit.edu/2017/tracking-spread-bird-flu-alaska-north-america-0317. Next, address the following:

  • Discuss the factors that make Alaskan waters in the summertime an optimal place and time for new strains of influenza to arise by genetic reassortment.
  • What do you think is the most interesting aspect of this situation?

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