Heat-killed Lactobacillus spp. cells enhance survivals of Caenorhabditis elegans against Salmonella and Yersinia infections

J. Lee, J. Choe, J. Kim, S. Oh, S. Park, S. Kim, Y. Kim

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26 Citations (Scopus)


This study examined the effect of feeding heat-killed Lactobacillus cells on the survival of Caenorhabditis elegans nematodes after Salmonella Typhimurium and Yersinia enterocolitica infection. The feeding of heat-killed Lactobacillus plantarum 133 (LP133) and Lactobacillus fermentum 21 (LP21) cells to nematodes was shown to significantly increase the survival rate as well as stimulate the expression of pmk-1 gene that key factor for C. elegans immunity upon infection compared with control nematodes that were only fed Escherichia coli OP50 (OP50) cells. These results suggest that heat-killed LP133 and LF21 cells exert preventive or protective effects against the Gram-negative bacteria Salm. Typhimurium and Y. enterocolitica. To better understand the mechanisms underlying the LF21-mediated and LP133-mediated protection against bacterial infection in nematodes, transcriptional profiling was performed for each experimental group. These experiments showed that genes related to energy generation and ageing, regulators of insulin/IGF-1-like signalling, DAF genes, oxidation and reduction processes, the defence response and/or the innate immune response, and neurological processes were upregulated in nematodes that had been fed heat-killed Lactobacillus cells compared with nematodes that had been fed E. coli cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)523-530
Number of pages8
JournalLetters in Applied Microbiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 The Society for Applied Microbiology.


  • Caenorhabditis elegans
  • Heat-killed cells
  • Host immunity
  • Lactobacillus spp.
  • Transcriptome analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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