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.
Microfluidic EPG Recordings Show Striking Pharyngeal Pumping Phenotype in a C. elegans Alzheimer’s Disease Model – Preliminary Findings
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 the ScreenChip between the recording electrodes applies gentle pressure to the worm’s body, which might likewise influence pumping. We investigated […]