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J Oral Microbiol. 2012;4. doi: 10.3402/jom.v4i0.10368. Epub 2012 Feb 21.

The Drosophila melanogaster host model.

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1
Division of Oral Biology, College of Dentistry, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA.

Abstract

The deleterious and sometimes fatal outcomes of bacterial infectious diseases are the net result of the interactions between the pathogen and the host, and the genetically tractable fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has emerged as a valuable tool for modeling the pathogen-host interactions of a wide variety of bacteria. These studies have revealed that there is a remarkable conservation of bacterial pathogenesis and host defence mechanisms between higher host organisms and Drosophila. This review presents an in-depth discussion of the Drosophila immune response, the Drosophila killing model, and the use of the model to examine bacterial-host interactions. The recent introduction of the Drosophila model into the oral microbiology field is discussed, specifically the use of the model to examine Porphyromonas gingivalis-host interactions, and finally the potential uses of this powerful model system to further elucidate oral bacterial-host interactions are addressed.

KEYWORDS:

Drosophila melanogaster; Pathogen-host interactions; Periodontitis; Porphyromonas gingivalis

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