Infections of nematodes are a major medical problem worldwide. This together with an increased resistance in nematodes against known anthelmintics drugs makes it necessary to develop new anthelmintics with other modes of action. One possibility is to isolate them from natural enemies of nematodes, such as the nematode-trapping fungi.
The nematode-trapping fungus Monacrosporium haptotylum uses an adhesive trap (called knob) when capturing nematodes. The knob is an adhesive cell that can detach from the mycelium and travel with the nematode and subsequently penetrate and infect it. However, it is not yet known what substances that are involved in the killing of nematodes.
I am using three different approaches for characterizing the mechanisms and to identify the molecules involved in the killing of nematodes by nematode-trapping fungi: