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Serotonergic Chemosensory Neurons Modify the C. elegans Immune Response by Regulating G-Protein Signaling in Epithelial Cells

Figure 4

The Gαo RGS EGL-10 is required in rectal epithelial cells to regulate the immune response and affect pathogen clearance.

egl-10 mutants were infected with M. nematophilum using either standard assay conditions (small lawn) or conditions where animals were unable to avoid the pathogen (big lawn) and the percentage of Dar progeny scored. egl-10(n692) and egl-10(md176) significantly decreased the percentage of Dar animals (A). Expression of EGL-10 cDNA, using a heatshock-inducible promoter, at L1, L2/L3 and L3/L4 stage (hs::EGL-10), or a rectal epithelial promoter (egl-5p::EGL-10), rescued the Dar phenotype in egl-10(n692) animals (A). Although egl-10(n692) animals failed to produce a wild type Dar response similar amounts of M. nematophilum, labeled using the nucleic acid stain SYTO13, still attached to the anal opening (indicated with an arrow in B) (B and C). The rate of clearance of SYTO13 labeled pathogen was significantly decreased in egl-10(n692) animals and this was rescued by expression of EGL-10 cDNA in the rectal epithelium which cleared labeled pathogen more rapidly than wild type animals (D). In D * indicates significance relative to wild type. § indicates significance relative to egl-10(n692).

Figure 4