C. elegans

[ sē ĕlə-gănz ]

A nematode (Caenorhabditis elegans) that lives in soil, feeds on bacteria, and reaches lengths of about 1 mm (0.04 inch). It was the first animal whose genome was completely sequenced, and is widely used as a “model organism” by researchers in genetics and developmental biology because it has a small genome and transparent skin.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.