Abstract: Hydra is a useful model cnidarian whose cell biology is well characterised and for which efficient transgenesis and gene knockdown techniques are available. The innate immune system of Hydra consists of a TLR pathway, a variety of NODs/NLRs and potent antimicrobial peptides that are secreted in species-specific patterns. Hydra species each harbour characteristic microbial populations that have remained stable over more than 30 years in culture, and which are at least partially modulated by the anti-microbial peptide repertoires of the host species. The Hydra work illuminates key aspects of cnidarian-bacterial interactions that are likely to apply more widely.
Biography: Soren Franzenburg is in the final throes of a PhD in the research group of Prof Thomas Bosch and Dr Sebastian Fraune at the University of Kiel. This group leads the field in the molecular genetics of cnidarian – microbe interactions.