The nematode Panagrellus redivivus is susceptible to killing by human pathogens at 37°C

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Caenorhabditis elegans has been used as a host for the study of bacteria that cause disease in mammals. However, a significant limitation of the model is that C. elegans is not viable at 37°C. We report that the gonochoristic nematode Panagrellus redivivus survives at 37°C and maintains its life cycle at temperatures up to and including 31.5°C. The C. elegans pathogens Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella enterica, Staphylococcus aureus, but not Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, reduced P. redivivus lifespan. Of four strains of Burkholderia multivorans tested, one reduced P. redivivus lifespan at both temperatures, one was avirulent at both temperatures and two strains reduced P. redivivus lifespan only at 37°C. The mechanism by which one of these strains killed P. redivivus at 37°C, but not at 25°C, was investigated further. Killing required viable bacteria, did not involve bacterial invasion of tissues, is unlikely to be due to a diffusible, bacterial toxin and was not associated with increased numbers of live bacteria within the intestine of the worm. We believe B. multivorans may kill P. redivivus by a temperature-regulated mechanism similar to B. pseudomallei killing of C. elegans. © 2005 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.




Laws, T. R., Smith, S. A., Smith, M. P., Harding, S. V., Atkins, T. P., & Titball, R. W. (2005). The nematode Panagrellus redivivus is susceptible to killing by human pathogens at 37°C. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 250(1), 77–83.

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