Caenorhabditis in India!
I saw that there is big enthusiasm to find nematodes of the Caenorhabditis genus from Indian soil. Well as per Dr. Arunan’s suggestions, I have tried exploring this. Indeed one nematode Caenorhabditis briggsae has been isolated from Thrissur, Kerala.
The researchers are from France. One of them being Marie-Anne Félix - IBENS - ENS. who works on the evolutionary biology of nematodes. As in humans, nematodes too are susceptible to parasitic infections. One such infection of Nematocidia parisii is found in C. elegans from France. The researchers wanted to track the spread of this infection over the world. They surveyed several regions in Europe and in India they came to Kerala.
At eight places in Kerala (four disctricts, Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur, Kottayam and Alappuzha) they found a fungal infection in only nematode (a strain of C. briggsae) from Periyar Tiger Reserve. While other uninfected strains of Caenorhabditis were found from Poovar estuary, Meenmutti water-falls, Ponmudi reserve (Trivandrum), Kanjirapally, and Alappuzha.
Thus Caenorhabditis genus nematods are present in India! Perhaps we could all take soil samples from diverse areas and check for nematodes belonging to this genus. Currently, some students in Mumbai, Kunal, Omkar, Anshu, Bivas, Atul and Gaurav are trying isolating nematodes from native soil. Further we have Yashvi from Thadomal Shahani College doing her internship at HBCSE on nematodes.
It would great to pool up and summarize the work of these groups so we could make this model system more resourceful!