Epilogue: Challenges for the future

Craig W. Roberts, Sabra L. Klein

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Charles Darwin contemplated the evolution of diversity within species in his book, On the Origin of Species. Darwin noted that there are profound differences between the sexes of a single species that evolve through a process he termed sexual selection. We propose that consideration of the adaptive significance as well as the mechanisms underlying why males and females respond differently to infection is fundamental for progress in infectious disease research. Future studies must consider not only the role that hormones play in modulating responses to infection, but also how genes, including sex chromosomal genes, impact responses to infection differentially between the sexes. Finally, by illustrating that sex and reproductive status impact responses to infection it is demonstrated that these factors might also influence responses to therapeutic treatments, including vaccines.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSex Hormones and Immunity to Infection
Place of PublicationBerlin
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9783642021558
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010


  • sexual selection
  • influenza vaccine
  • FoxP3 gene
  • federal drug administration
  • yellow fever vaccine

Cite this

Roberts, C. W., & Klein, S. L. (2010). Epilogue: Challenges for the future. In Sex Hormones and Immunity to Infection (pp. 303-311). https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-02155-8_12