Caenorhabditis elegans: a model to understand host–microbe interactions

  • Arun Kumar
  • Aiswarya Baruah
  • Masahiro Tomioka
  • Yuichi Iino
  • Mohan C. Kalita
  • Mojibur KhanEmail author


Host–microbe interactions within the gut are fundamental to all higher organisms. Caenorhabditis elegans has been in use as a surrogate model to understand the conserved mechanisms in host–microbe interactions. Morphological and functional similarities of C. elegans gut with the human have allowed the mechanistic investigation of gut microbes and their effects on metabolism, development, reproduction, behavior, pathogenesis, immune responses and lifespan. Recent reports suggest their suitability for functional investigations of human gut bacteria, such as gut microbiota of healthy and diseased individuals. Our knowledge on the gut microbial diversity of C. elegans in their natural environment and the effect of host genetics on their core gut microbiota is important. Caenorhabditis elegans, as a model, is continuously bridging the gap in our understanding the role of genetics, environment, and dietary factors on physiology of the host.


Commensal Probiotics Longevity Dysbiosis Pathogen 



The author AK is a recipient of junior research fellowship (DBT/JRF/BET-16/I/2016/AL/143) from Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India. Caenorhabditis elegans has been established at the Institute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology (IASST) with the Grant from DBT under Unit of excellence project (BT/NE/550/U-EXCEL). We thank Dr. Atanu Adak for his useful comments on the manuscript. We are also thankful to Mr. William Barbeau (Lab Technician, School of Medicine, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, United States of America) for helping us in improving the English grammar of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

We hereby declare no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arun Kumar
    • 1
  • Aiswarya Baruah
    • 2
  • Masahiro Tomioka
    • 3
  • Yuichi Iino
    • 3
    • 4
  • Mohan C. Kalita
    • 5
  • Mojibur Khan
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Molecular Biology and Microbial Biotechnology Laboratory, Division of Life SciencesInstitute of Advanced Study in Science and Technology (IASST)GuwahatiIndia
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural BiotechnologyAssam Agricultural UniversityJorhatIndia
  3. 3.Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of ScienceThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  4. 4.JST, CRESTKawaguchiJapan
  5. 5.Department of BiotechnologyGauhati UniversityGuwahatiIndia

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