From Unicellular to Metazoan Immunity

  • Robert Jack
  • Louis Du Pasquier


In a population of single cell organisms, each individual must optimise its capacities for all of the essential tasks in life, such as catching food, moving from place to place, reproduction, defence and so on. These different components of fitness compete with each other for energy and metabolites, so that trade-offs become inevitable. With so many divergent goals to be met, it is clear that there will be no perfect solution to each of the organism’s many problems. Yet, because only the fittest will survive, the pressure to find the best possible compromise solutions is considerable, and those that have evolved are very good indeed. This is what makes unicellular life such a very successful evolutionary strategy.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Jack
    • 1
  • Louis Du Pasquier
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of ImmunologyUniversity of GreifswaldGreifswaldGermany
  2. 2.Department of Environmental Sciences, ZoologyUniversity of BaselBasel StadtSwitzerland

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