Table of Contents
ISRN Microbiology
Volume 2013, Article ID 356451, 7 pages
Review Article

Host-Microbe Interactions in Caenorhabditis elegans

Department of Environmental Sciences, School of the Coast and Environment, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA

Received 18 June 2013; Accepted 16 July 2013

Academic Editors: A. Hamood and F. Navarro-Garcia

Copyright © 2013 Rui Zhang and Aixin Hou. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A good understanding of how microbes interact with hosts has a direct bearing on our capability of fighting infectious microbial pathogens and making good use of beneficial ones. Among the model organisms used to study reciprocal actions among microbes and hosts, C. elegans may be the most advantageous in the context of its unique attributes such as the short life cycle, easiness of laboratory maintenance, and the availability of different genetic mutants. This review summarizes the recent advances in understanding host-microbe interactions in C. elegans. Although these investigations have greatly enhanced our understanding of C. elegans-microbe relationships, all but one of them involve only one or few microbial species. We argue here that more research is needed for exploring the evolution and establishment of a complex microbial community in the worm’s intestine and its interaction with the host.