Research conducted by the Laboratory of Nematology is part of the research program of the Graduate School Experimental Plant Sciences (EPS) and C.T. de Wit Graduate School for Production Ecology & Resource Conservation (PE&RC).
Research: Influence of genotype and environmental elements on phenotype of C. elegans
Viral diseases cause severe healthy challenges for human. To explore the underlying genetic mechanism of the virus-host interaction we will use the model nematode species Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) and its natural pathogen Orsay virus. As the intraspecific susceptibility of C. elegans against Orsay virus is variable between genotypes, the C. elegans-Orsay virus model organisms was applied to find one or more genes involved in the susceptibility of C. elegans against the Orsay virus. We will investigate the Orsay virus-C. elegans interaction focusing on the genetic architecture. The combined effect of genotype and environmental elements on phenotype will also be explored. Importantly, I will investigate the critical factor a-synuclein in Parkinson’s disease (PD) in C. elegans to dissect the susceptibility of PD strains against Orsay virus. In this project, the objective is to build a fundamental multiple-interaction system combining gene background variation, gene editing, and environmental elements (Orsay virus infection and heat-shock) on C. elegans. In this topic, CRISPR/Cas system is the main technique applied to edit gene.