Pathogens can slow down or reverse invasion fronts of their hosts

Frank M. Hilker, Mark A. Lewis, Hiromi Seno, Michel Langlais, Horst Malchow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


Infectious diseases are often regarded as possible explanations for the sudden collapse of biological invasions. This phenomenon is characterized by a host species, which firstly can successfully establish in a non-native habitat, but then spontaneously disappears again. This study proposes a reaction-diffusion model consisting of a simple SI disease with vital dynamics of Allee effect type. By way of travelling wave analysis, conditions are derived under which the invasion of the host population is slowed down, stopped or reversed as a consequence of a subsequently introduced disease. Hence, pathogens can dramatically control the rate of spread of invasive species.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)817-832
Number of pages16
JournalBiological Invasions
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Sept


  • Allee effect
  • Epidemiology
  • Invasion
  • Pathogen
  • Reversal
  • SI model
  • Slow-down
  • Travelling wave


Dive into the research topics of 'Pathogens can slow down or reverse invasion fronts of their hosts'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this