We discovered that in the absence of cholesterol, NPC mutants display a lower pharyngeal pumping frequency and a longer duration between pumps than control N2 animals (see Figure 1). This is the progress we made in [...]
Effects of serotonin in mammals can be modeled using pharyngeal pumping phenotypes in C. elegans Terra Hiebert, Ph. D. Serotonin is well known for being important in the regulation of people’s mood. Here in [...]
Yoanne Clovis, Ph.D. We know that C. elegans’ feeding behavior strongly influences the worm’s aging and longevity1. So, a couple of months ago, we decided to test adult worms from Day 1 to Day 15 [...]
Yoanne M. Clovis, Ph.D. Summary Non-mammalian model organisms are typically used in early research to deliver fast answers to a discovery problem. The most popular model organisms in biological and biomedical research are the fruit [...]
Yoanne M. Clovis, Ph.D. | Non-mammalian model organisms are typically used in early research to deliver fast answers to a discovery problem. The most popular model organisms in biological and biomedical research are the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, the zebrafish and the nematode C. elegans. We provide a comparison of the advantages and limitations of many commonly used model organisms.
Janis Weeks, Ph.D. | The NemaMetrix ScreenChip system was developed for C. elegans, which is but one of the estimated 1 million members of the highly diverse phylum, Nematoda. To demonstrate the utility of microfluidic EPG recordings from species beyond C. elegans, we adapted the platform to record from several human and animal gastrointestinal parasites, male and female members of a dioecious nematode species, and a carnivorous nematode.
Janis Weeks, Ph.D. | The heavy metal, copper (Cu2+), is toxic to humans and C. elegans. We used the ScreenChip system to detect Cu2+ in aqueous samples at concentrations (≤10 mg/L) within the range found in contaminated home water supplies. EPG recordings provide a powerful new tool for C. elegans toxicology research.
Do Nematode Worms get 'The Munchies’? | Shawn Lockery, Ph.D. | The NemaMetrix ScreenChip System is a microfluidics platform for recording electropharyngeograms (EPGs) from the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans and other nematode species. This technical note demonstrates the utility of the ScreenChip system in pharmacology, taking as an example compounds chemically related to Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana (Cannabis sativa).
Yoanne M. Clovis, Ph.D. | Humans have over 70 potassium channel genes, but only some of these have been linked to disease. In this respect, the KCNQ family of potassium channels is exceptional: mutations in four out of five KCNQ genes underlie diseases including cardiac arrhythmias, deafness, and epilepsy. In this technical note, we investigated the effect of mutations of orthologous KCNQ-like genes in the nematode C. elegans on electrical excitability using the NemaMetrix ScreenChip System.
Shawn Lockery, Ph.D. | In C. elegans, a key marker of age-related decline in health is a reduction in the rate of pharyngeal pumping. Until now, it has been necessary to count pumps by eye, which is laborious, slow, and often inaccurate. The NemaMetrix ScreenChip System automates the process of counting pumps by recording their electrical signature, called the electropharyngeogram (EPG). Here we show that the age-related decline in pumping is recapitulated when pumps are counted in electrical recordings.
Q: After I position a worm in the ScreenChip, should I start recording right away or wait a while? BACKGROUND Mechanical stimulation can temporarily reduce pumping frequency in C. elegans (1). Positioning a worm in [...]
Shawn Lockery, Ph.D. | This technical note demonstrates that the ScreenChip System can reproduce the expected effects of pumping mutants in which glutamate transmission is disrupted. It also illustrates new mechanistic insights the system can provide.
Kathleen Conery | Pharyngeal pumping behavior in C. elegans is employed to ingest bacteria, the worms’ normal food. Under laboratory conditions, C. elegans are reared on agar plates seeded with the E. coli strain OP50, which stimulates feeding behavior. Accordingly, we tested the ability of OP50 treatment to elicit pharyngeal pumping, using the ScreenChip system.
Kathleen Conery | The neuromodulator serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5HT) is often used to stimulate pharyngeal pumping in C. elegans and other nematodes. To investigate the concentration-dependence of 5HT treatment on pump frequency measured in the ScreenChip platform, we tested the effects of 0, 2, 5 and 10 mM 5HT on N2 (wild type) adults.
Kathleen Conery | Most existing anthelmintics act on ion channels or neurotransmitter receptors, so determining whether a candidate compound impairs electrical signaling is useful to know early in the screening process. Essential oil of fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) has been used traditionally in South America as a worming agent against human infections with the trematode parasite, Schistosoma mansoni. Using the ScreenChip platform, we investigated the effect of fennel essential oil as an anthelmintic on C. elegans.