Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 102, Issue 9, pp 3939–3949 | Cite as

Predator-prey interactions of nematode-trapping fungi and nematodes: both sides of the coin

  • Guillermo Vidal-Diez de Ulzurrun
  • Yen-Ping HsuehEmail author


Nematode-trapping fungi develop complex trapping devices to capture and consume nematodes. The dynamics of these organisms is especially important given the pathogenicity of nematodes and, consequently, the potential application of nematode-trapping fungi as biocontrol agents. Furthermore, both the nematodes and nematode-trapping fungi can be easily grown in laboratories, making them a unique manipulatable predator-prey system to study their coevolution. Several different aspects of these fungi have been studied, such as their genetics and the different factors triggering trap formation. In this review, we use the nematode-trapping fungus Arthrobotrys oligospora (which forms adhesive nets) as a model to describe the trapping process. We divide this process into several stages; namely attraction, recognition, trap formation, adhesion, penetration, and digestion. We summarize the latest findings in the field and current knowledge on the interactions between nematodes and nematode-trapping fungi, representing both sides of the predator-prey interaction.


Nematode-trapping fungi Arthrobotrys oligospora C. elegans 



We thank Tsong-Yu Huang for his original drawing in the figure and John Wang and Ting-Fan Wang for giving comments on the manuscript.


This research was funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology of Taiwan (grant number 106-2311-B-001-039-MY3).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Ethical statement

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Molecular Biology, Academia SinicaTaipeiTaiwan

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