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Neuronal and non-neuronal signals regulate C. elegans avoidance of contaminated food

Anderson, Alexandra and McMullan, Rachel (2018). Neuronal and non-neuronal signals regulate C. elegans avoidance of contaminated food. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences (In Press).

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One way in which animals minimise the risk of infection is to reduce their contact with contaminated food. Here we establish a model of pathogen-contaminated food avoidance using the nematode worm Caernorhabditis elegans. We find that avoidance of pathogen-contaminated food protects C. elegans from the deleterious effects of infection and, using genetic approaches, demonstrate that multiple sensory neurons are required for this avoidance behaviour. In addition, our results reveal that avoidance of contaminated food requires bacterial adherence to non-neuronal cells in the tail of C. elegans that are also required for the cellular immune response. Previous studies in C. elegans have contributed significantly to our understanding of molecular and cellular basis of host-pathogen interactions and our model provides a unique opportunity to gain basic insights into how animals avoid contaminated food.

Item Type: Journal Item
ISSN: 1471-2970
Project Funding Details:
Funded Project NameProject IDFunding Body
Genetic analysis of post-developmental Rho GTPase signaling: identification and characterization of Rho signaling pathways required during the C. elegans immune response. (Transfer In)088409/B/09/ZWellcome Trust
Keywords: Caenorhabditis elegans; avoidance behaviour; host-pathogen interaction
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) > Life, Health and Chemical Sciences
Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
Item ID: 52248
Depositing User: Rachel Mcmullan
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2017 16:25
Last Modified: 13 Nov 2017 13:38
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