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Sample records for actinomucor elegans var

  1. Maxillary Sinusitis Caused by Actinomucor elegans

    PubMed Central

    Davel, Graciela; Featherston, Patricia; Fernández, Anibal; Abrantes, Ruben; Canteros, Cristina; Rodero, Laura; Sztern, Carlos; Perrotta, Diego

    2001-01-01

    We report the first case of maxillary sinusitis caused by Actinomucor elegans in an 11-year-old patient. Histopathological and mycological examinations of surgical maxillary sinuses samples showed coenocytic hyphae characteristic of mucoraceous fungi. The fungi recovered had stolons and rhizoids, nonapophyseal and globose sporangia, and whorled branched sporangiophores and was identified as A. elegans. After surgical cleaning and chemotherapy with amphotericin B administered intravenously and by irrigation, the patient became asymptomatic and the mycological study results were negative. PMID:11158140

  2. Abutilon theophrasti's defense against the allelochemical benzoxazolin-2(3H)-one: support by Actinomucor elegans.

    PubMed

    Kia, Sevda Haghi; Schulz, Margot; Ayah, Emmanuel; Schouten, Alexander; Müllenborn, Carmen; Paetz, Christian; Schneider, Bernd; Hofmann, Diana; Disko, Ulrich; Tabaglio, Vincenzo; Marocco, Adriano

    2014-12-01

    Abutilon theophrasti Medik., previously found to be rather insensitive to benzoxazinoid containing rye mulch and the allelochemical benzoxazolin-2(3H)-one (BOA), can be associated with the zygomycete Actinomucor elegans, whereby the fungus colonizes the root relatively superficially and mainly in the maturation zone. The fungus mitigates necrosis of the cotyledons when seedlings are incubated with 2 mM BOA, in contrast to those that lack the fungus. In liquid cultures of the fungus, tryptophan was identified. The accumulation of tryptophan is increased in presence of BOA. This amino acid seems to be important in protecting Abutilon against BOA and its derivatives since it suppressed the accumulation of BOA derived, highly toxic 2-aminophen-oxazin-3-one (APO) in the medium and on the root surface during BOA incubations of Abutilon seedlings. Although A. elegans is insensitive to BOA and APO, the fungus is not able to protect the plant against harmful effects of APO, when seedlings are treated with the compound. Abutilon can detoxify BOA via BOA-6-OH glucosylation probably by a cell wall associated glucosyltransferase, but only low amounts of the product accumulate. Low tryptophan concentrations can contribute to a degradation of the toxic intermediate BOA-6-OH by Fenton reactions, whereby the amino acid is oxidized. One of the oxidation products was identified as 4(1H)-quinolinone, which is the core substructure of the quorum sensing molecule 2-heptyl-3-hydroxy-4-quinolone. The mutualistic association of Abutilon theophrasti with Actinomucor elegans is considered as opportunistic and facultative. Such plant-fungus associations depend rather likely on environmental conditions, such as the mode of fertilization. PMID:25432667

  3. New Record of Mariannaea elegans var. elegans in Korea.

    PubMed

    Tang, Longqing; Hyun, Min Woo; Yun, Yeo Hong; Suh, Dong Yeon; Kim, Seong Hwan; Sung, Gi Ho

    2012-03-01

    A Mariannaea fungus was isolated during investigation of an elm tree infested with unidentified beetles. Based on morphological characteristics and molecular analysis of the internal transcribed spacer rDNA sequence, the fungus was identified as Mariannaea elegans var. elegans. Fungal growth was better on malt extract agar than on potato dextrose agar and oatmeal agar. Optimal temperature and pH for growth of the fungus were 30? and pH 7.0, respectively. The fungus was found to have the ability to produce extracellular enzymes such as amylase, ?-glucosidase, cellulase, and protease. This is first report on M. elegans var. elegans in Korea. PMID:22783129

  4. Biotransformation of patchoulol by Cunninghamella echinulata var. elegans.

    PubMed

    Xu, Fangfang; Liao, Kangsheng; Liu, Yuhong; Zhang, Zhenbiao; Guo, Dean; Su, Ziren; Liu, Bo

    2016-03-01

    Biocatalysis of patchoulol (PA) was performed by the fungus Cunninghamella echinulata var. elegans. Eight metabolites (1-8) including four new compounds were obtained, and their structures were elucidated as (5R,8S)-5,8 dihydroxypatchoulol (1), (5R*,9R*)-5,9 dihydroxypatchoulol (2), (6S*, 9S*)-6,9 dihydroxypatchoulol (3), and (4R*)-4 hydroxypatchoulol (4) by spectroscopic analysis. The absolute configuration of 1 was determined by single crystal X-ray diffraction. PMID:26778089

  5. Production of a new pyridine N-oxide by bioconversion with Cunninghamella echinulata var. elegans.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Jia; Gage, David; Zhan, Jixun

    2012-11-01

    A new N-oxide was produced from 3-(N-Boc-aminomethyl)-5-bromopyridine by bioconversion with Cunninghamella echinulata var. elegans ATCC 9245, and its structure was established based on the spectral data. The microbial N-oxidation is efficient and highly selective. The substrate was transformed into the product in 7 days. PMID:22762974

  6. Bioconversion of Stemodia maritima diterpenes and derivatives by Cunninghamella echinulata var. elegans and Phanerochaete chrysosporium.

    PubMed

    Lamm, Andrew S; Reynolds, William F; Reese, Paul B

    2006-06-01

    Stemodane and stemarane diterpenes isolated from the plant Stemodia maritima and their dimethylcarbamate derivatives were fed to growing cultures of the fungi Cunninghamella echinulata var. elegans ATCC 8688a and Phanerochaete chrysosporium ATCC 24725. C. echinulata transformed stemodin (1) to its 7alpha-hydroxy- (2), 7beta-hydroxy- (3) and 3beta-hydroxy- (4) analogues. 2alpha-(N,N-Dimethylcarbamoxy)-13-hydroxystemodane (6) gave 2alpha-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoxy)-6alpha,13-dihydroxystemodane (7) and 2alpha-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoxy)-7alpha,13-dihydroxystemodane (8). Stemodinone (9) yielded 14-hydroxy-(10) and 7beta-hydroxy- (11) congeners along with 1, 2 and 3. Stemarin (13) was converted to the hitherto unreported 6alpha,13-dihydroxystemaran-19-oic acid (18). 19-(N,N-Dimethylcarbamoxy)-13-hydroxystemarane (14) yielded 13-hydroxystemaran-19-oic acid (17) along with the two metabolites: 19-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoxy)-2beta,13-dihydroxystemarane (15) and 19-(N,N-dimethylcarbamoxy)-2beta,8,13-trihydroxystemarane (16). P. chrysosporium converted 1 into 3, 4 and 2alpha,11beta,13-trihydroxystemodane (5). The dimethylcarbamate (6) was not transformed by this microorganism. Stemodinone (9) was hydroxylated at C-19 to give 12. Both stemarin (13) and its dimethylcarbamate (14) were recovered unchanged after incubation with Phanerochaete. PMID:16725164

  7. Antioxidant activity and protective effect of Turnera ulmifolia Linn. var. elegans against carbon tetrachloride-induced oxidative damage in rats.

    PubMed

    Brito, Naira J N; López, Jorge A; do Nascimento, Maria Aparecida; Macêdo, José B M; Silva, Gabriel Araujo; Oliveira, Cláudia N; de Rezende, Adriana Augusto; Brandão-Neto, José; Schwarz, Aline; Almeida, Maria das Graças

    2012-12-01

    The present study aimed to determine whether the leaves of Turnera ulmifolia Linn. var. elegans extract exert significant antioxidant activity. The antioxidant activity of its hydroethanolic extract (HEETU) was evaluated by assessing (a) its radical scavenging ability in vitro, and (b) its in vivo effect on lipid peroxidation and antioxidant enzyme activities. The in vitro antioxidant assay (DPPH) clearly supported HEETU free radical scavenging potential. Moreover, glutathione content and antioxidant enzyme activities (glutathione peroxidase, superoxide dismutase and catalase) were significantly enhanced in CCl(4)-treated rats due to oral HEETU-treatment (500 mg/kgb.w.) over 7 and 21 days. In addition, an improvement was observed in lipid peroxidation and serum biochemical parameters (aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase), indicating a protective effect against CCl(4)-induced liver injuries, confirmed by histopathological studies. The HEETU effect was comparable to the standard drug Legalon® (50 mg/kgb.w.) under the same experimental condition. Quantitative analysis of the HPLC extract revealed the presence of flavonoids, wich mediate the effects of antioxidant and oxidative stress. In conclusion, extract components exhibit antioxidant and hepatoprotective activities in vitro and in vivo. PMID:22940430

  8. C. elegans TRP channels

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Rui; Xu, X.Z. Shawn

    2010-01-01

    TRP (transient receptor potential) channels represent a superfamily of cation channels found in all eukaryotes. The C. elegans genome encodes seventeen TRP channels covering all of the seven TRP subfamilies. Genetic analyses in C. elegans have implicated TRP channels in a wide spectrum of behavioral and physiological processes, ranging from sensory transduction (e.g. chemosensation, touch sensation, proprioception and osmosensation) to fertilization, drug dependence, organelle biogenesis, apoptosis, gene expression, and neurotransmitter/hormone release. Many C. elegans TRP channels share similar activation and regulatory mechanisms with their vertebrate counterparts. Studies in C. elegans have also revealed some previously unrecognized functions and regulatory mechanisms of TRP channels. C. elegans represents an excellent genetic model organism for the study of function and regulation of TRP channels in vivo. PMID:21290304

  9. Gastrulation in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Nance, Jeremy; Lee, Jen-Yi; Goldstein, Bob

    2005-01-01

    Gastrulation is the process by which the germ layers become positioned in an embryo. C. elegans gastrulation serves as a model for studying the molecular mechanisms of diverse cellular and developmental phenomena, including morphogenesis, cell polarization, cell-cell signaling, actomyosin contraction and cell-cell adhesion. One distinct advantage of studying these phenomena in C. elegans is that genetic tools can be combined with high resolution live cell imaging and direct manipulations of the cells involved. Here we review what is known to date about the cellular and molecular mechanisms that function in C. elegans gastrulation. PMID:18050409

  10. Laser Microsurgery in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Fang-Yen, Christopher; Gabel, Christopher V.; Samuel, Aravinthan D. T.; Bargmann, Cornelia I.; Avery, Leon

    2013-01-01

    Laser killing of cell nuclei has long been a powerful means of examining the roles of individual cells in C. elegans. Advances in genetics, laser technology, and imaging have further expanded the capabilities and usefulness of laser surgery. Here, we review the implementation and application of currently used methods for target edoptical disruption in C. elegans. PMID:22226524

  11. Chemosensation in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2006-01-01

    C. elegans has a highly developed chemosensory system that enables it to detect a wide variety of volatile (olfactory) and water-soluble (gustatory) cues associated with food, danger, or other animals. Much of its nervous system and more than 5% of its genes are devoted to the recognition of environmental chemicals. Chemosensory cues can elicit chemotaxis, rapid avoidance, changes in overall motility, and entry into and exit from the alternative dauer developmental stage. These behaviors are regulated primarily by the amphid chemosensory organs, which contain eleven pairs of chemosensory neurons. Each amphid sensory neuron expresses a specific set of candidate receptor genes and detects a characteristic set of attractants, repellents, or pheromones. About 500-1000 different G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are expressed in chemosensory neurons, and these may be supplemented by alternative sensory pathways as well. Downstream of the GPCRs, two signal transduction systems are prominent in chemosensation, one that uses cGMP as a second messenger to open cGMP-gated channels, and one that relies upon TRPV channels. These sensory pathways are modulated and fine-tuned by kinases and phosphatases. Chemosensory preferences can be modified by sensory adaptation, developmental history, and associative learning, allowing C. elegans to integrate context and experience into its behavior. PMID:18050433

  12. Toxicity testing using Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Middendorf, P.J.; Dusenbery, D.B.; Williams, P.L.

    1995-12-31

    Caenorhabditis elegans is a small free-living nematode that is representative of what may be the most abundant animal group. It has been promoted as a possible model organism for toxicity testing in the laboratory and in field evaluations in part because more is known about its biology than any other animal, Toxicity tests using C. elegans have been developed with lethality, reproduction, and behavior as end points. The tests have also been developed to varying degrees using standard laboratory media, water, and soil. The results of the tests when exposing C. elegans to a variety of metals, inorganic, and organic compounds indicate it is typically at least as sensitive as other species currently used, such as Daphnia and earthworms, and is generally much easier to maintain in the laboratory. The advantages and disadvantages of C. elegans and the state of development of the tests will be discussed.

  13. C. elegans noncoding RNA genes.

    PubMed Central

    Stricklin, Shawn L; Griffiths-Jones, Sam; Eddy, Sean R

    2005-01-01

    The C. elegans genome contains approximately 1300 genes that produce functional noncoding RNA (ncRNA) transcripts. Here we describe what is currently known about these ncRNA genes, from the perspective of the annotation of the finished genome sequence. We have collated a reference set of C. elegans ncRNA gene annotation relative to the WS130 version of the genome assembly, and made these data available in several formats. PMID:18023116

  14. Axon Regeneration in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Hammarlund, Marc; Jin, Yishi

    2014-01-01

    Single axon transection by laser surgery has made C. elegans a new model for axon regeneration. Multiple conserved molecular signaling modules have been discovered through powerful genetic screening. in vivo imaging with single cell and axon resolution has revealed unprecedented cellular dynamics in regenerating axons. Information from C. elegans has greatly expanded our knowledge of the molecular and cellular mechanisms of axon regeneration. PMID:24794753

  15. Ethanol preference in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Lee, J; Jee, C; McIntire, S L

    2009-08-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans senses multiple environmental stimuli through sensory systems and rapidly changes its behaviors for survival. With a simple and well-characterized nervous system, C. elegans is a suitable animal model for studying behavioral plasticity. Previous studies have shown acute neurodepressive effects of ethanol on multiple behaviors of C. elegans similar to the effect of ethanol on other organisms. Caenorhabditis elegans also develops ethanol tolerance during continuous exposure to ethanol. In mammals, chronic ethanol exposure leads to ethanol tolerance as well as increased ethanol consumption. Ethanol preference is associated with the development of tolerance and may lead to the development of ethanol dependence. In this study, we show that C. elegans is a useful model organism for studying chronic effects of ethanol, including the development of ethanol preference. We designed a behavioral assay for testing ethanol preference after prolonged ethanol exposure. Despite baseline aversive responses to ethanol, animals show ethanol preference after 4 h of pre-exposure to ethanol and exhibit significantly enhanced preference for ethanol after a lifetime of ethanol exposure. The cat-2 and tph-1 mutant animals have defects in the synthetic enzymes for dopamine and serotonin, respectively. These mutants are deficient in the development of ethanol preference, indicating that dopamine and serotonin are required for this form of behavioral plasticity. PMID:19614755

  16. CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS Deficiency Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Sigurdson, D. Christine; Spanier, Gail J.; Herman, Robert K.

    1984-01-01

    Six schemes were used to identify 80 independent recessive lethal deficiencies of linkage group (LG) II following X-ray treatment of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Complementation tests between the deficiencies and ethyl methanesulfonate-induced recessive visible, lethal and sterile mutations and between different deficiencies were used to characterize the extents of the deficiencies. Deficiency endpoints thus helped to order 36 sites within a region representing about half of the loci on LG II and extending over about 5 map units. New mutations occurring in this region can be assigned to particular segments of the map by complementation tests against a small number of deficiencies; this facilitates the assignment of single-site mutations to particular genes, as we illustrate. Five sperm-defective and five oocyte-defective LG II sterile mutants were identified and mapped. Certain deficiency-by-deficiency complementation tests allowed us to suggest that the phenotypes of null mutations at two loci represented by visible alleles are wild type and that null mutations at a third locus confer a visible phenotype. A segment of LG II that is about 12 map units long and largely devoid of identified loci seems to be greatly favored for crossing over. PMID:6500256

  17. Alternative splicing in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Zahler, Alan M

    2005-01-01

    Alternative splicing is a common mechanism for the generation of multiple isoforms of proteins. It can function to expand the proteome of an organism and can serve as a way to turn off gene expression post-transcriptionally. This review focuses on splicing and its regulation in C. elegans. The fully-sequenced C. elegans genome combined with its elegant genetics offers unique advantages for exploring alternative splicing regulation in metazoans. The topics covered in this review include constitutive splicing factors, identification of alternatively spliced genes, examples of alternative splicing in C. elegans, and alternative splicing regulation. Key genes whose regulated alternative splicing are reviewed include let-2, unc-32, unc-52, egl-15 and xol-1. Factors involved in alternative splicing that are discussed include mec-8, smu-1, smu-2, fox-1, exc-7 and unc-75. PMID:18050427

  18. The glia of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Oikonomou, Grigorios; Shaham, Shai

    2010-01-01

    Glia have been, in many ways, the proverbial elephant in the room. Although glia are as numerous as neurons in vertebrate nervous systems, technical and other concerns had left research on these cells languishing, while research on neurons marched on. Importantly, model systems to study glia had lagged considerably behind. A concerted effort in recent years to develop the canonical invertebrate model animals, Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans, as settings to understand glial roles in nervous system development and function has begun to bear fruit. In this review we summarize our current understanding of glia and their roles in the nervous system of the nematode C. elegans. The recent studies we describe highlight the similarities and differences between C. elegans and vertebrate glia, and focus on novel insights that are likely to have general relevance to all nervous systems. PMID:21732423

  19. The Genetics of CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS

    PubMed Central

    Brenner, S.

    1974-01-01

    Methods are described for the isolation, complementation and mapping of mutants of Caenorhabditis elegans, a small free-living nematode worm. About 300 EMS-induced mutants affecting behavior and morphology have been characterized and about one hundred genes have been defined. Mutations in 77 of these alter the movement of the animal. Estimates of the induced mutation frequency of both the visible mutants and X chromosome lethals suggests that, just as in Drosophila, the genetic units in C. elegans are large. PMID:4366476

  20. C. elegans Chemotaxis Assay

    PubMed Central

    Margie, Olivia; Palmer, Chris; Chin-Sang, Ian

    2013-01-01

    Many organisms use chemotaxis to seek out food sources, avoid noxious substances, and find mates. Caenorhabditis elegans has impressive chemotaxis behavior. The premise behind testing the response of the worms to an odorant is to place them in an area and observe the movement evoked in response to an odorant. Even with the many available assays, optimizing worm starting location relative to both the control and test areas, while minimizing the interaction of worms with each other, while maintaining a significant sample size remains a work in progress 1-10. The method described here aims to address these issues by modifying the assay developed by Bargmann et al.1. A Petri dish is divided into four quadrants, two opposite quadrants marked "Test" and two are designated "Control". Anesthetic is placed in all test and control sites. The worms are placed in the center of the plate with a circle marked around the origin to ensure that non-motile worms will be ignored. Utilizing a four-quadrant system rather than one 2 or two 1 eliminates bias in the movement of the worms, as they are equidistant from test and control samples, regardless of which side of the origin they began. This circumvents the problem of worms being forced to travel through a cluster of other worms to respond to an odorant, which can delay worms or force them to take a more circuitous route, yielding an incorrect interpretation of their intended path. This method also shows practical advantages by having a larger sample size and allowing the researcher to run the assay unattended and score the worms once the allotted time has expired. PMID:23644543

  1. Proteomic analysis of Caenorhabditis elegans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Proteomic studies of the free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans have recently received great attention because this animal is a useful model platform for the in vivo study of various biological problems relevant to human disease. In general, proteomic analysis is performed in order to address a...

  2. Electrophysiological Methods for C. elegans Neurobiology

    PubMed Central

    Goodman, Miriam B.; Lindsay, Theodore H.; Lockery, Shawn R.; Richmond, Janet E.

    2014-01-01

    Patch-clamp electrophysiology is the technique of choice for the biophysical analysis of the function of nerve, muscle, and synapse in C. elegans nematodes. Considerable technical progress has been made in C. elegans electrophysiology in the decade since the initial publication of this technique. Today, most, if not all electrophysiological studies that can be done in larger animal preparations can also be done in C. elegans. This chapter has two main goals. The first is to present to a broad audience the many techniques available for patch-clamp analysis of neurons, muscles, and synapses in C. elegans. The second is to provide a methodological introduction to the techniques for patch-clamping C. elegans neurons and body-wall muscles in vivo, including emerging methods for optogenetic stimulation coupled with post-synaptic recording. We also present samples of the cell-intrinsic and post-synaptic ionic currents that can be measured in C. elegans nerve and muscle. PMID:22226532

  3. C. elegans and volatile anesthetics.

    PubMed Central

    Morgan, P G; Kayser, E-B; Sedensky, M M

    2007-01-01

    The mechanism of action of volatile anesthetics remains an enigma, despite their worldwide use. The nematode C. elegans has served as an excellent model to unravel this mystery. Genes and gene sets that control the behavior of the animal in volatile anesthetics have been identified, using multiple endpoints to mimic the phenomenon of anesthesia in man. Some of these studies have clear translational implications in more complicated organisms. PMID:18050492

  4. Sensory Transduction in Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Austin L.; Ramot, Daniel; Goodman, Miriam B.

    The roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans has a well-defined and comparatively simple repertoire of sensory-guided behaviors, all of which rely on its ability to detect chemical, mechanical or thermal stimuli. In this chapter, we review what is known about the ion channels that mediate sensation in this remarkable model organism. Genetic screens for mutants defective in sensory-guided behaviors have identified genes encoding channel proteins, which are likely transducers of chemical, thermal, and mechanical stimuli. Such classical genetic approaches are now being coupled with molecular genetics and in vivo cellular physiology to elucidate how these channels are activated in specific sensory neurons. The ion channel superfamilies implicated in sensory transduction in C. elegans - CNG, TRP, and DEG/ENaC - are conserved across phyla and also appear to contribute to sensory transduction in other organisms, including vertebrates. What we learn about the role of these ion channels in C. elegans sensation is likely to illuminate analogous processes in other animals, including humans.

  5. Potassium channels in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Salkoff, L; Wei, A D; Baban, B; Butler, A; Fawcett, G; Ferreira, G; Santi, C M

    2005-01-01

    Ion channels are the "transistors" (electronic switches) of the brain that generate and propagate electrical signals in the aqueous environment of the brain and nervous system. Potassium channels are particularly important because, not only do they shape dynamic electrical signaling, they also set the resting potentials of almost all animal cells. Without them, animal life as we know it would not exist, much less higher brain function. Until the completion of the C. elegans genome sequencing project the size and diversity of the potassium channel extended gene family was not fully appreciated. Sequence data eventually revealed a total of approximately 70 genes encoding potassium channels out of the more than 19,000 genes in the genome. This seemed to be an unexpectedly high number of genes encoding potassium channels for an animal with a small nervous system of only 302 neurons. However, it became clear that potassium channels are expressed in all cell types, not only neurons, and that many cells express a complex palette of multiple potassium channels. All types of potassium channels found in C. elegans are conserved in mammals. Clearly, C. elegans is "simple" only in having a limited number of cells dedicated to each organ system; it is certainly not simple with respect to its biochemistry and cell physiology. PMID:18050399

  6. TabVar: Tabulated Variables

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2015-12-15

    TabVar: A Python library for manipulating datasets in the form of tabulated variables. Tables in tabvar contain many columns representing independent variables, but exactly one distinguished column for the dependent variable. Having a single distinguished column allows a natural lifting of arithmetic operators to tables, much (and in fact fully generalizing) multidimensional array arithmetic. The convenient syntax of whole-table arithmetic, along with the usual operations of filtering and aggregation, and all in the setting ofmore »python's interactive REPL allows for rapid exploration of datasets.« less

  7. TabVar: Tabulated Variables

    SciTech Connect

    2015-12-15

    TabVar: A Python library for manipulating datasets in the form of tabulated variables. Tables in tabvar contain many columns representing independent variables, but exactly one distinguished column for the dependent variable. Having a single distinguished column allows a natural lifting of arithmetic operators to tables, much (and in fact fully generalizing) multidimensional array arithmetic. The convenient syntax of whole-table arithmetic, along with the usual operations of filtering and aggregation, and all in the setting of python's interactive REPL allows for rapid exploration of datasets.

  8. Germline Transformation of Caenorhabditis elegans by Injection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kadandale, Pavan; Chatterjee, Indrani; Singson, Andrew

    Microinjection is a commonly used technique for DNA transformation in Caenorhabditis elegans. It is a powerful tool that links genetic and molecular analysis to phenotypic analysis. In this chapter we shall provide an overview of microinjection for germline transformation in worms. Our discussion will emphasize C. elegans reproductive biology, applications and protocols for carrying out microinjection in order to successfully obtain transgenic worms.

  9. Macrosegregation in ESR and VAR Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, K. O.; Domingue, J. A.; Maurer, G. E.; Flanders, H. D.

    1986-01-01

    The method of heat generation, heat transfer characteristics, and ingot structure are very different in the VAR and ESR processes, which result in different tendencies and mechanisms for macrosegregation formation in forged IN-718. Freckles are niobium rich and can be generated in both ESR and VAR, with higher incidence in ESR than VAR. White spots are niobium lean and can only be found in VAR-processed materials. Freckles are indige-nous in nature, and result from the flow of solute-rich interdendritic liquid in the mushy zone during solidification. The most plausible cause for white spots is exogenous material, which remains unmelted, falling into the molten pool. The best way to minimize the formation of freckles is to improve the ingot heat transfer rate, a more difficult task in ESR than in VAR.

  10. The genome of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Waterston, R; Sulston, J

    1995-01-01

    The physical map of the 100-Mb Caenorhabditis elegans genome consists of 17,500 cosmids and 3500 yeast artificial chromosomes (YACs). A total of 22.5 Mb has been sequenced, with the remainder expected by 1998. A further 15.5 Mb of unfinished sequence is freely available online: because the areas sequenced so far are relatively gene rich, about half the 13,000 genes can now be scanned. More than a quarter of the genes are represented by expressed sequence tags (ESTs). All information pertaining to the genome is publicly available in the ACeDB data base. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 PMID:7479894

  11. Analyses of C. elegans fat metabolic pathways.

    PubMed

    Barros, Alexandre Guimarães de Almeida; Liu, Jason; Lemieux, George A; Mullaney, Brendan C; Ashrafi, Kaveh

    2012-01-01

    In Caenorhabdatis elegans as in other animals, fat regulation reflects the outcome of behavioral, physiological, and metabolic processes. The amenability of C. elegans to experimentation has led to utilization of this organism for elucidating the complex homeostatic mechanisms that underlie energy balance in intact organisms. The optical advantages of C. elegans further offer the possibility of studying cell biological mechanisms of fat uptake, transport, storage, and utilization, perhaps in real time. Here, we discuss the rationale as well as advantages and potential pitfalls of methods used thus far to study metabolism and fat regulation, specifically triglyceride metabolism, in C. elegans. We provide detailed methods for visualization of fat depots in fixed animals using histochemical stains and in live animals by vital dyes. Protocols are provided and discussed for chloroform-based extraction of total lipids from C. elegans homogenates used to assess total triglyceride or phospholipid content by methods such as thin-layer chromatography or used to obtain fatty acid profiles by methods such as gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Additionally, protocols are provided for the determination of rates of intestinal fatty acid uptake and fatty acid breakdown by ?-oxidation. Finally, we discuss methods for determining rates of de novo fat synthesis and Raman scattering approaches that have recently been employed to investigate C. elegans lipids without reliance on invasive techniques. As the C. elegans fat field is relatively new, we anticipate that the indicated methods will likely be improved upon and expanded as additional researchers enter this field. PMID:22226531

  12. Using C. elegans for aging research

    PubMed Central

    Tissenbaum, Heidi A.

    2015-01-01

    Over a century ago, the zoologist Emile Maupas first identified the nematode, Rhabditis elegans, in the soil in Algiers. Subsequent work and phylogenic studies renamed the species Caenorhabditis elegans or more commonly referred to as C. elegans; (Caeno meaning recent; rhabditis meaning rod; elegans meaning nice). However, it was not until 1963, when Sydney Brenner, already successful from his work on DNA, RNA, and the genetic code, suggested the future of biological research lay in model organisms. Brenner believed that biological research required a model system that could grow in vast quantities in the lab, were cheap to maintain and had a simple body plan, and he chose the nematode C. elegans to fulfill such a role. Since that time, C. elegans has emerged as one of the premiere model systems for aging research. This paper reviews some initial identification of mutants with altered lifespan with a focus on genetics and then discusses advantages and disadvantages for using C. elegans as a model system to understand human aging. This review focuses on molecular genetics aspects of this model organism. PMID:26136622

  13. Using Caenorhabditis elegans to Study Serpinopathies

    PubMed Central

    Long, Olivia S.; Gosai, Sager J.; Kwak, Joon Hyeok; King, Dale E.; Perlmutter, David H.; Silverman, Gary A.; Pak, Stephen C.

    2015-01-01

    Protein misfolding, polymerization, and/or aggregation are hallmarks of serpinopathies and many other human genetic disorders including Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, and Parkinson’s disease. While higher organism models have helped shape our understanding of these diseases, simpler model systems, like Caenorhabditis elegans, offer great versatility for elucidating complex genetic mechanisms underlying these diseases. Moreover, recent advances in automated high-throughput methodologies have promoted C. elegans as a useful tool for drug discovery. In this chapter, we describe how one could model serpinopathies in C. elegans and how one could exploit this model to identify small molecule compounds that can be developed into effective therapeutic drugs. PMID:21683258

  14. Axon regeneration mechanisms: insights from C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Lizhen; Chisholm, Andrew D.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms of axon regeneration is of great importance to develop therapeutic treatments for spinal cord injury or stroke. Axon regeneration has long been studied in various vertebrate and invertebrate models, but until recently had not been analyzed in the genetically tractable model organism Caenorhabditis elegans. The small size, simple neuroanatomy, and transparency of C. elegans allows single fluorescently labeled axons to be severed in live animals using laser microsurgery. Many neurons in C. elegans are capable of regenerative regrowth, and can in some cases re-establish functional connections. Large-scale genetic screens have begun to elucidate the genetic basis of axon regrowth. PMID:21907582

  15. Gait synchronization in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Jinzhou; Raizen, David M.; Bau, Haim H.

    2014-01-01

    Collective motion is observed in swarms of swimmers of various sizes, ranging from self-propelled nanoparticles to fish. The mechanisms that govern interactions among individuals are debated, and vary from one species to another. Although the interactions among relatively large animals, such as fish, are controlled by their nervous systems, the interactions among microorganisms, which lack nervous systems, are controlled through physical and chemical pathways. Little is known, however, regarding the mechanism of collective movements in microscopic organisms with nervous systems. To attempt to remedy this, we studied collective swimming behavior in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, a microorganism with a compact nervous system. We evaluated the contributions of hydrodynamic forces, contact forces, and mechanosensory input to the interactions among individuals. We devised an experiment to examine pair interactions as a function of the distance between the animals and observed that gait synchronization occurred only when the animals were in close proximity, independent of genes required for mechanosensation. Our measurements and simulations indicate that steric hindrance is the dominant factor responsible for motion synchronization in C. elegans, and that hydrodynamic interactions and genotype do not play a significant role. We infer that a similar mechanism may apply to other microscopic swimming organisms and self-propelled particles. PMID:24778261

  16. Untwisting the Caenorhabditis elegans embryo

    PubMed Central

    Christensen, Ryan Patrick; Bokinsky, Alexandra; Santella, Anthony; Wu, Yicong; Marquina-Solis, Javier; Guo, Min; Kovacevic, Ismar; Kumar, Abhishek; Winter, Peter W; Tashakkori, Nicole; McCreedy, Evan; Liu, Huafeng; McAuliffe, Matthew; Mohler, William; Colón-Ramos, Daniel A; Bao, Zhirong; Shroff, Hari

    2015-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans possesses a simple embryonic nervous system with few enough neurons that the growth of each cell could be followed to provide a systems-level view of development. However, studies of single cell development have largely been conducted in fixed or pre-twitching live embryos, because of technical difficulties associated with embryo movement in late embryogenesis. We present open-source untwisting and annotation software (http://mipav.cit.nih.gov/plugin_jws/mipav_worm_plugin.php) that allows the investigation of neurodevelopmental events in late embryogenesis and apply it to track the 3D positions of seam cell nuclei, neurons, and neurites in multiple elongating embryos. We also provide a tutorial describing how to use the software (Supplementary file 1) and a detailed description of the untwisting algorithm (Appendix). The detailed positional information we obtained enabled us to develop a composite model showing movement of these cells and neurites in an 'average' worm embryo. The untwisting and cell tracking capabilities of our method provide a foundation on which to catalog C. elegans neurodevelopment, allowing interrogation of developmental events in previously inaccessible periods of embryogenesis. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10070.001 PMID:26633880

  17. Untwisting the Caenorhabditis elegans embryo.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Ryan Patrick; Bokinsky, Alexandra; Santella, Anthony; Wu, Yicong; Marquina-Solis, Javier; Guo, Min; Kovacevic, Ismar; Kumar, Abhishek; Winter, Peter W; Tashakkori, Nicole; McCreedy, Evan; Liu, Huafeng; McAuliffe, Matthew; Mohler, William; Colón-Ramos, Daniel A; Bao, Zhirong; Shroff, Hari

    2015-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans possesses a simple embryonic nervous system with few enough neurons that the growth of each cell could be followed to provide a systems-level view of development. However, studies of single cell development have largely been conducted in fixed or pre-twitching live embryos, because of technical difficulties associated with embryo movement in late embryogenesis. We present open-source untwisting and annotation software (http://mipav.cit.nih.gov/plugin_jws/mipav_worm_plugin.php) that allows the investigation of neurodevelopmental events in late embryogenesis and apply it to track the 3D positions of seam cell nuclei, neurons, and neurites in multiple elongating embryos. We also provide a tutorial describing how to use the software (Supplementary file 1) and a detailed description of the untwisting algorithm (Appendix). The detailed positional information we obtained enabled us to develop a composite model showing movement of these cells and neurites in an 'average' worm embryo. The untwisting and cell tracking capabilities of our method provide a foundation on which to catalog C. elegans neurodevelopment, allowing interrogation of developmental events in previously inaccessible periods of embryogenesis. PMID:26633880

  18. Variable cosmological term \\varLambda(t)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Socorro, J.; D'oleire, M.; Pimentel, Luis O.

    2015-11-01

    We present the case of time-varying cosmological term \\varLambda(t). The main idea arises by proposing that as in the cosmological constant case, the scalar potential is identified as V(?)=2\\varLambda, with \\varLambda a constant, this identification should be kept even when the cosmological term has a temporal dependence, i.e., V(?(t))=2\\varLambda(t). We use the Lagrangian formalism for a scalar field ? with standard kinetic energy and arbitrary potential V(?) and apply this model to the Friedmann-Robertson-Walker (FRW) cosmology. Exact solutions of the field equations are obtained by a special ansatz to solve the Einstein-Klein-Gordon equation and a particular potential for the scalar field and barotropic perfect fluid. We present the evolution on this cosmological term with different scenarios.

  19. Neurogenesis in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Hobert, Oliver

    2010-01-01

    The nervous system represents the most complex tissue of C. elegans both in terms of numbers (302 neurons and 56 glial cells = 37% of the somatic cells in a hermaphrodite) and diversity (118 morphologically distinct neuron classes). The lineage and morphology of each neuron type has been described in detail and neuronal fate markers exists for virtually all neurons in the form of fluorescent reporter genes. The ability to "phenotype" neurons at high resolution combined with the amenability of C. elegans to genetic mutant analysis make the C. elegans nervous system a prime model system to elucidate the nature of the gene regulatory programs that build a nervous system-a central question of developmental neurobiology. Discussing a number of regulatory genes involved in neuronal lineage determination and neuronal differentiation, I will try to carve out in this review a few general principles of neuronal development in C. elegans. These principles may be conserved across phylogeny. PMID:20891032

  20. Scorpion antivenom effect of micropropagated Aristolochia elegans.

    PubMed

    Izquierdo, Alejandro Mora; Zapata, Elsa Ventura; Jiménez-Ferrer, J Enrique; Muñoz, Crescencio Bazaldúa; Aparicio, Antonio Jiménez; Torres, Kalina Bermúdez; Torres, Lidia Osuna

    2010-08-01

    Aristolochia elegans Mast. (Aristolochiaceae) has been used to treat scorpion envenoming in Mexican traditional medicine. In vitro studies of the pharmacological activity of raw extracts from A. elegans roots have shown activity against scorpion bite. The aim of the present study was to determine for the first time the antagonistic effect of hexane and methanol extracts of the aerial parts and roots from micropropagated A. elegans plants in a model of isolated guinea-pig ileum contracted by scorpion bite. Results showed that the methanol extracts of aerial organs (74%) and roots (65%) of micropropagated plants have a similar antitoxin activity against scorpion poisoning to hexane extracts of wild plants (65%). These results suggest that using methanol extracts from the micropropagated plant material instead of wild plant root extracts from A. elegans is an alternative for treatment against scorpion bite symptoms, and will contribute to the conservation of this medicinal species. PMID:20673176

  1. C. elegans outside the Petri dish

    PubMed Central

    Frézal, Lise; Félix, Marie-Anne

    2015-01-01

    The roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans has risen to the status of a top model organism for biological research in the last fifty years. Among laboratory animals, this tiny nematode is one of the simplest and easiest organisms to handle. And its life outside the laboratory is beginning to be unveiled. Like other model organisms, C. elegans has a boom-and-bust lifestyle. It feasts on ephemeral bacterial blooms in decomposing fruits and stems. After resource depletion, its young larvae enter a migratory diapause stage, called the dauer. Organisms known to be associated with C. elegans include migration vectors (such as snails, slugs and isopods) and pathogens (such as microsporidia, fungi, bacteria and viruses). By deepening our understanding of the natural history of C. elegans, we establish a broader context and improved tools for studying its biology. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.05849.001 PMID:25822066

  2. C. elegans outside the Petri dish.

    PubMed

    Frézal, Lise; Félix, Marie-Anne

    2015-01-01

    The roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans has risen to the status of a top model organism for biological research in the last fifty years. Among laboratory animals, this tiny nematode is one of the simplest and easiest organisms to handle. And its life outside the laboratory is beginning to be unveiled. Like other model organisms, C. elegans has a boom-and-bust lifestyle. It feasts on ephemeral bacterial blooms in decomposing fruits and stems. After resource depletion, its young larvae enter a migratory diapause stage, called the dauer. Organisms known to be associated with C. elegans include migration vectors (such as snails, slugs and isopods) and pathogens (such as microsporidia, fungi, bacteria and viruses). By deepening our understanding of the natural history of C. elegans, we establish a broader context and improved tools for studying its biology. PMID:25822066

  3. 4D-Var Developement at GMAO

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pelc, Joanna S.; Todling, Ricardo; Akkraoui, Amal El

    2014-01-01

    The Global Modeling and Assimilation Offce (GMAO) is currently using an IAU-based 3D-Var data assimilation system. GMAO has been experimenting with a 3D-Var-hybrid version of its data assimilation system (DAS) for over a year now, which will soon become operational and it will rapidly progress toward a 4D-EnVar. Concurrently, the machinery to exercise traditional 4DVar is in place and it is desirable to have a comparison of the traditional 4D approach with the other available options, and evaluate their performance in the Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS) DAS. This work will also explore the possibility for constructing a reduced order model (ROM) to make traditional 4D-Var computationally attractive for increasing model resolutions. Part of the research on ROM will be to search for a suitably acceptable space to carry on the corresponding reduction. This poster illustrates how the IAU-based 4D-Var assimilation compares with our currently used IAU-based 3D-Var.

  4. Forward and reverse mutagenesis in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kutscher, Lena M.; Shaham, Shai

    2014-01-01

    Mutagenesis drives natural selection. In the lab, mutations allow gene function to be deciphered. C. elegans is highly amendable to functional genetics because of its short generation time, ease of use, and wealth of available gene-alteration techniques. Here we provide an overview of historical and contemporary methods for mutagenesis in C. elegans, and discuss principles and strategies for forward (genome-wide mutagenesis) and reverse (target-selected and gene-specific mutagenesis) genetic studies in this animal. PMID:24449699

  5. Cancer models in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kirienko, Natalia V.; Mani, Kumaran; Fay, David S.

    2013-01-01

    Although now dogma, the idea that non-vertebrate organisms such as yeast, worms, and flies could inform, and in some cases even revolutionize, our understanding of oncogenesis in humans was not immediately obvious. Aided by the conservative nature of evolution and the persistence of a cohort of devoted researchers, the role of model organisms as a key tool in solving the cancer problem has, however, become widely accepted. In this review, we focus on the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and its diverse and sometimes surprising contributions to our understanding of the tumorigenic process. Specifically, we discuss findings in the worm that address a well-defined set of processes known to be deregulated in cancer cells including cell cycle progression, growth factor signaling, terminal differentiation, apoptosis, the maintenance of genome stability, and developmental mechanisms relevant to invasion and metastasis. PMID:20175192

  6. Is Caenorhabditis elegans the Magic Bullet for Anthelminthic Drug Discovery?

    PubMed

    Keiser, Jennifer

    2015-10-01

    Recent advances in handling and readout have facilitated high-throughput screens with Caenorhabditis elegans. A new study demonstrates that C. elegans is a useful tool in high-throughput anthelminthic drug discovery. Despite challenges, drug discovery using C. elegans offers opportunities that might lead the way to novel anthelminthic drugs. PMID:26422771

  7. Chemically defined medium and Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Szewczyk, Nathaniel J.; Kozak, Elena; Conley, Catharine A.

    2003-01-01

    BACKGROUND: C. elegans has been established as a powerful genetic system. Use of a chemically defined medium (C. elegans Maintenance Medium (CeMM)) now allows standardization and systematic manipulation of the nutrients that animals receive. Liquid cultivation allows automated culturing and experimentation and should be of use in large-scale growth and screening of animals. RESULTS: We find that CeMM is versatile and culturing is simple. CeMM can be used in a solid or liquid state, it can be stored unused for at least a year, unattended actively growing cultures may be maintained longer than with standard techniques, and standard C. elegans protocols work well with animals grown in defined medium. We also find that there are caveats to using defined medium. Animals in defined medium grow more slowly than on standard medium, appear to display adaptation to the defined medium, and display altered growth rates as they change the composition of the defined medium. CONCLUSIONS: As was suggested with the introduction of C. elegans as a potential genetic system, use of defined medium with C. elegans should prove a powerful tool.

  8. Advanced static VAR generator employing GTO thyristors

    SciTech Connect

    Edwards, C.W.; Mattern, K.E.; Stacey, E.J. ); Nannery, P.R.; Gubernick, J. )

    1988-10-01

    The availability of large GTO thyristors has made Advanced Static VAR Generators (ASVGs) competitive with conventional Static VAR Generators (SVGs). An ASVG substitutes silicon for large passive components. This paper describes a +-1 Mvar prototype ASVG which was developed under contract to the Empire State Electric Energy Research Corporation (ESEERCO). The purpose of the development was to prove the basic principles and verify performance under practical operating conditions. The +-1 Mvar prototype has been operating at the host utility site, Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc., Spring Valley, NY, since October 1986. An overview of the electrical and mechanical configuration and test results are given in the paper.

  9. Optogenetic mutagenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Noma, Kentaro; Jin, Yishi

    2015-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) can modify and damage DNA. Here we report an optogenetic mutagenesis approach that is free of toxic chemicals and easy to perform by taking advantage of a genetically encoded ROS generator. This method relies on the potency of ROS generation by His-mSOG, the mini singlet oxygen generator, miniSOG, fused to a histone. Caenorhabditis elegans expressing His-mSOG in the germline behave and reproduce normally, without photoinduction. Following exposure to blue light, the His-mSOG animals produce progeny with a wide range of heritable phenotypes. We show that optogenetic mutagenesis by His-mSOG induces a broad spectrum of mutations including single-nucleotide variants (SNVs), chromosomal deletions, as well as integration of extrachromosomal transgenes, which complements those derived from traditional chemical or radiation mutagenesis. The optogenetic mutagenesis expands the toolbox for forward genetic screening and also provides direct evidence that nuclear ROS can induce heritable and specific genetic mutations. PMID:26632265

  10. Optogenetic mutagenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Noma, Kentaro; Jin, Yishi

    2015-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) can modify and damage DNA. Here we report an optogenetic mutagenesis approach that is free of toxic chemicals and easy to perform by taking advantage of a genetically encoded ROS generator. This method relies on the potency of ROS generation by His-mSOG, the mini singlet oxygen generator, miniSOG, fused to a histone. Caenorhabditis elegans expressing His-mSOG in the germline behave and reproduce normally, without photoinduction. Following exposure to blue light, the His-mSOG animals produce progeny with a wide range of heritable phenotypes. We show that optogenetic mutagenesis by His-mSOG induces a broad spectrum of mutations including single-nucleotide variants (SNVs), chromosomal deletions, as well as integration of extrachromosomal transgenes, which complements those derived from traditional chemical or radiation mutagenesis. The optogenetic mutagenesis expands the toolbox for forward genetic screening and also provides direct evidence that nuclear ROS can induce heritable and specific genetic mutations. PMID:26632265

  11. Host-Microbe Interactions in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Aixin

    2013-01-01

    A good understanding of how microbes interact with hosts has a direct bearing on our capability of fighting infectious microbial pathogens and making good use of beneficial ones. Among the model organisms used to study reciprocal actions among microbes and hosts, C. elegans may be the most advantageous in the context of its unique attributes such as the short life cycle, easiness of laboratory maintenance, and the availability of different genetic mutants. This review summarizes the recent advances in understanding host-microbe interactions in C. elegans. Although these investigations have greatly enhanced our understanding of C. elegans-microbe relationships, all but one of them involve only one or few microbial species. We argue here that more research is needed for exploring the evolution and establishment of a complex microbial community in the worm's intestine and its interaction with the host. PMID:23984180

  12. Detection of Autophagy in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Palmisano, Nicholas J; Meléndez, Alicia

    2016-01-01

    Autophagy is a dynamic and catabolic process that results in the breakdown and recycling of cellular components through the autophagosomal-lysosomal pathway. Many autophagy genes identified in yeasts and mammals have orthologs in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. In recent years, gene inactivation by RNA interference (RNAi) and chromosomal mutations has been useful to probe the functions of autophagy in C. elegans, and a role for autophagy has been shown to contribute to multiple processes, such as the adaptation to stress, longevity, cell death, cell growth control, clearance of aggregation-prone proteins, degradation of P granules during embryogenesis, and apoptotic cell clearance. Here, we discuss some of these roles and describe methods that can be used to study autophagy in C. elegans. Specifically, we summarize how to visualize autophagy in embryos, larva, or adults, how to detect the lipidation of the ubiquitin-like modifier LGG-1 by western blot, and how to inactivate autophagy genes by RNAi. PMID:26832690

  13. C. elegans network biology: a beginning.

    PubMed Central

    Piano, Fabio; Gunsalus, Kristin C; Hill, David E; Vidal, Marc

    2006-01-01

    The architecture and dynamics of molecular networks can provide an understanding of complex biological processes complementary to that obtained from the in-depth study of single genes and proteins. With a completely sequenced and well-annotated genome, a fully characterized cell lineage, and powerful tools available to dissect development, Caenorhabditis elegans, among metazoans, provides an optimal system to bridge cellular and organismal biology with the global properties of macromolecular networks. This chapter considers omic technologies available for C. elegans to describe molecular networks--encompassing transcriptional and phenotypic profiling as well as physical interaction mapping--and discusses how their individual and integrated applications are paving the way for a network-level understanding of C. elegans biology. PMID:18050437

  14. Regulation of Body Fat in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Srinivasan, Supriya

    2016-01-01

    Studies conducted in C. elegans over the last decade highlight the ancient and complex origins of body fat regulation. In this critical review, I introduce the major functional approaches used to study energy balance and body fat, the lipid composition of C. elegans, the regulation of cellular fat metabolism and its transcriptional control. Next I describe the influence of the sensory nervous system on body fat and the major regulatory mechanisms that couple food perception in the nervous system with the production of energy via fat metabolism. The final section describes the opportunities for the discovery of neuroendocrine factors that control communication between the nervous system and the metabolic tissues. The coming years are expected to reveal a wealth of information on the neuroendocrine control of body fat in C. elegans. PMID:25340962

  15. Complete mitochondrial genome sequence of Nectogale elegans.

    PubMed

    Huang, Ting; Yan, Chaochao; Tan, Zheng; Tu, Feiyun; Yue, Bisong; Zhang, Xiuyue

    2014-08-01

    The elegant water shrew (Nectogale elegans) belongs to the family Soricidae, and distributes in northern South Asia, central and southern China and northern Southeast Asia. In this study, the complete mitochondrial genome of N. elegans was sequenced. It was determined to be 17,460 bases, and included 13 protein-coding genes (PCGs), 22 tRNA genes, 2 ribosomal RNA genes and one non-coding region, which is similar to other mammalian mitochondrial genomes. Bayesian inference and maximum likelihood methods were used to construct phylogenetic trees based on 12 heavy-strand concatenated PCGs. Phylogenetic analyses further confirmed that Crocidurinae diverged prior to Soricinae, and Sorex unguiculatus differentiated earlier than N. elegans. PMID:23795853

  16. Phospholipase Cepsilon regulates ovulation in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Kariya, Ken-Ichi; Bui, Yen Kim; Gao, Xianlong; Sternberg, Paul W; Kataoka, Tohru

    2004-10-01

    Phospholipase Cepsilon (PLCepsilon) is a novel class of phosphoinositide-specific PLC with unknown physiological functions. Here, we present the first genetic analysis of PLCepsilon in an intact organism, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Ovulation in C. elegans is dependent on an inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP(3)) signaling pathway activated by the receptor tyrosine kinase LET-23. We generated deletion mutants of the gene, plc-1, encoding C. elegans PLCepsilon. We observed a novel ovulation phenotype whereby oocytes are trapped in the spermatheca due to delayed dilation of the spermatheca-uterine valve. The expression of plc-1 in the adult spermatheca is consistent with its involvement in regulation of ovulation. On the other hand, we failed to observe genetic interaction of plc-1 with let-23-mediated IP(3) signaling pathway genes, suggesting a complex mechanism for control of ovulation. PMID:15355798

  17. Neurophysiological methods in C. elegans: an introduction.

    PubMed Central

    Schafer, William R

    2006-01-01

    The simple and well-defined structure of the C. elegans nervous system has made it an attractive model for studying the neural and genetic basis of behavior. However, the wider use physiological methods for monitoring neural activity in vivo or determining the effects of specific ion channels on neuronal function has been a relatively recent development. This chapter presents a compendium of protocols and technical reports on the current state of the art in C. elegans electrophysiology and neuroimaging. These include methods for calcium imaging in intact animals, in situ electrical recording from neurons and muscle cells, and in vitro recording from cultured neurons and oocytes. PMID:18050439

  18. LIN-12/Notch signaling in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Greenwald, Iva

    2005-01-01

    Receptors of the LIN-12/Notch family mediate cell-cell interactions during animal development, and aberrations in LIN-12/Notch signaling have been implicated in human disease. Studies in C. elegans have been instrumental in defining the basic features of the LIN-12/Notch pathway, the role of LIN-12/Notch proteins as receptors for intercellular signals, the mechanism of signal transduction, and the regulation of LIN-12/Notch signaling during cell fate decisions. This chapter is focused on detailing how the "awesome power of C. elegans genetics" has identified many core components and modulators of LIN-12/Notch activity. PMID:18050403

  19. Biogenic amine neurotransmitters in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Chase, Daniel L; Koelle, Michael R

    2007-01-01

    Four biogenic amines: octopamine, tyramine, dopamine and serotonin act in C. elegans to modulate behavior in response to changing environmental cues. These neurotransmitters act at both neurons and muscles to affect egg laying, pharyngeal pumping, locomotion and learning. A variety of experimental approaches including genetic, imaging, biochemical and pharmacological analyses have been used to identify the enzymes and cells that make and release the amines and the cells and receptors that bind them. Dopamine and serotonin act through receptors and downstream signaling mechanisms similar to those that operate in the mammalian brain suggesting that C. elegans will provide a valuable model for understanding biogenic amine signaling in the brain. PMID:18050501

  20. Notch signaling in the C. elegans embryo.

    PubMed Central

    Priess, James R

    2005-01-01

    Cell-cell interactions mediated by the Notch signaling pathway occur throughout C. elegans embryogenesis. These interactions have major roles in specifying cell fates and in tissue morphogenesis. The network of Notch interactions is linked in part through the Notch-regulated expression of components of the pathway, allowing one interaction to pattern subsequent ones. The Notch signal transduction pathway is highly conserved in animal embryogenesis. The REF-1 family of bHLH transcription factors are major targets of Notch signaling in the C. elegans embryo, and are distantly related to HES proteins that are targets of Notch signaling in Drosophila and vertebrates. PMID:18050407

  1. Lignans from Syringa pinnatifolia Hemsl. Var. alashanensis.

    PubMed

    Ao, Wu-Li-Ji; Bao, Xiao-Hua; Wu, Xiao-Lan; Wang, Qing-Hu

    2012-01-01

    Two new lignans, syripinnalignans A and B (1 and 2), together with two known lignans, were isolated from the stem of Syringa pinnatifolia Hemsl. Var. alashanensis. The structures of 1 and 2 were elucidated by spectroscopic methods, including extensive 1D and 2D NMR techniques. PMID:22375878

  2. Ascaroside signaling in C. elegans*

    PubMed Central

    Ludewig, Andreas H.; Schroeder, Frank C.

    2013-01-01

    Over the past 10 years, the relevance of small-molecule signaling for many aspects of C. elegans development and behavior has become apparent. One prominent group of small-molecule signals are the ascarosides, which control dauer entry and exit as well as a variety of sex-specific and social behaviors, including male attraction, hermaphrodite repulsion, olfactory plasticity, and aggregation. This wide range of biological functions is facilitated by a great diversity of ascaroside chemical structures. These are based on the sugar ascarylose, which is linked to fatty acid-like side chains of varying lengths and often decorated further with building blocks derived from amino acids, folate, and other primary metabolites. Different ascarosides or combinations of ascarosides mediate different phenotypes, and even small differences in chemical structures are often associated with strongly altered activity profiles. Additional complexity arises from concentration-dependent effects and synergism between different ascarosides. The ascarosides are sensed by several types of chemosensory head neurons, including the ASK, ASI, and ADL neurons as well as the male-specific CEM neurons. Ascaroside perception is mediated by diverse families of G-protein coupled membrane receptors that act upstream of conserved signal transduction pathways, including insulin/IGF-1 signaling and transforming growth factor beta (TGF-?) signaling. Biosynthesis of the ascarosides appears to integrate input from several primary metabolic pathways, including peroxisomal ?-oxidation of long-chain fatty acids and amino acid catabolism. Life stage, sex, as well as food availability and other environmental factors affect ascaroside biosynthesis, suggesting that ascaroside signaling communicates detailed information about life history and metabolic state. PMID:23355522

  3. VAR Support from Distributed Wind Energy Resources: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Romanowitz, H.; Muljadi, E.; Butterfield, C. P.; Yinger, R.

    2004-07-01

    As the size and quantity of wind farms and other distributed generation facilities increase, especially in relation to local grids, the importance of a reactive power compensator or VAR support from these facilities becomes more significant. Poorly done, it can result in cycling or inadequate VAR support, and the local grid could experience excessive voltage regulation and, ultimately, instability. Improved wind turbine and distributed generation power control technologies are creating VAR support capabilities that can be used to enhance the voltage regulation and stability of local grids. Locating VAR support near the point of consumption, reducing step size, and making the control active all improve the performance of the grid. This paper presents and discusses alternatives for improving the integration of VAR support from distributed generation facilities such as wind farms. We also examine the relative effectiveness of distributed VAR support on the local grid and how it can b e integrated with the VAR support of the grid operator.

  4. Ubiquitin-mediated pathways in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Kipreos, Edward T

    2005-01-01

    Ubiquitin is a highly conserved 76 amino acid polypeptide, which is covalently attached to target proteins to signal their degradation by the 26S proteasome or to modify their function or localization. Regulated protein degradation, which is associated with many dynamic cellular processes, occurs predominantly via the ubiquitin-proteasome system. Ubiquitin is conjugated to target proteins through the sequential actions of a ubiquitin-activating enzyme, ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes, and ubiquitin-protein ligases. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has one ubiquitin-activating enzyme, twenty putative ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes, and potentially hundreds of ubiquitin-protein ligases. Research in C. elegans has focused on the cellular functions of ubiquitin pathway components in the context of organismal development. A combination of forward genetics, reverse genetics, and genome-wide RNAi screens has provided information on the loss-of-function phenotypes for the majority of C. elegans ubiquitin pathway components. Additionally, detailed analysis of several classes of ubiquitin-protein ligases has led to the identification of their substrates and the molecular pathways that they regulate. This review presents a comprehensive overview of ubiquitin-mediated pathways in C. elegans with a description of the known components and their identified molecular, cellular, and developmental functions. PMID:18050424

  5. Fungal transformation of fluoranthene. [Cunninghamella elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Pothuluri, J.V.; Freeman, J.P.; Evans, F.E.; Cerniglia, C.E. )

    1990-10-01

    The fungus Cunninghamella elegans ATCC 36112 metabolized approximately 80% of the 3-{sup 14}C-labeled fluoranthene (FA) added within 72 h of incubation. C. elegans metabolized FA to trans-2,3-dihydroxy-2,3-dihydrofluoranthene (trans-2,3-dihydrodiol), 8- and 9-hydroxyfluoranthene trans-2,3-dihydrodiol, 3-fluoranthene-{beta}-glucopyranoside, and 3-(8-hydroxyflouranthene)-{beta}-glucopyranoside. These metabolites were separated by thin-layer and reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography and identified by {sup 1}H nuclear magnetic resonance, UV, and mass spectral techniques. The major pathway involved hydroxylation to form a glucoside conjugate of 3-hydroxyfluoranthene and a glucoside conjugate of 3,8-dihydroxyfluoranthene which together accounted for 52% of the total ethyl acetate-soluble metabolites. C. elegans initially metabolized FA in the 2,3 position to form fluoranthene trans-2,3-dihydrodiol, which has previously been shown to be a biologically active compound in mammalian and bacterial genotoxicity tests. However, C. elegans formed predominantly glucoside conjugates of the phenolic derivatives of FA, which suggests that this fungus has the potential to detoxify FA.

  6. Apophysomyces elegans: an emerging zygomycete in India.

    PubMed

    Chakrabarti, A; Ghosh, A; Prasad, G S; David, J K; Gupta, S; Das, A; Sakhuja, V; Panda, N K; Singh, S K; Das, S; Chakrabarti, T

    2003-02-01

    Apophysomyces elegans was considered a rare but medically important zygomycete. We analyzed the clinical records of eight patients from a single center in whom zygomycosis due to A. elegans was diagnosed over a span of 25 months. We also attempted a DNA-based method for rapid identification of the fungi and looked for interstrain polymorphism using microsattelite primers. Three patients had cutaneous and subcutaneous infections, three had isolated renal involvement, one had rhino-orbital tissue infection, and the final patient had a disseminated infection involving the spleen and kidney. Underlying illnesses were found in two patients, one with diabetes mellitus and the other with chronic alcoholism. A history of traumatic implantation was available for three patients. All except two of the patients responded to surgical and/or medical therapy; the diagnosis for the two exceptions was made at the terminal stage of infection. Restriction enzyme (MboI, MspI, HinfI) digestion of the PCR-amplified internal transcribed spacer region helped with the rapid and specific identification of A. elegans. The strains could be divided into two groups according to their patterns, with clustering into one pattern obtained by using microsatellite [(GTG)(5) and (GAC)(5)] PCR fingerprinting. The study highlights the epidemiology, clinical spectrum, and diagnosis of emerging A. elegans infections. PMID:12574283

  7. The invertebrate Caenorhabditis elegans biosynthesizes ascorbate

    PubMed Central

    Patananan, Alexander N.; Budenholzer, Lauren M.; Pedraza, Maria E.; Torres, Eric R.; Adler, Lital N.; Clarke, Steven G.

    2015-01-01

    L-ascorbate, commonly known as vitamin C, serves as an antioxidant and cofactor essential for many biological processes. Distinct ascorbate biosynthetic pathways have been established for animals and plants, but little is known about the presence or synthesis of this molecule in invertebrate species. We have investigated ascorbate metabolism in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, where this molecule would be expected to play roles in oxidative stress resistance and as cofactor in collagen and neurotransmitter synthesis. Using high-performance liquid chromatography and gas-chromatography mass spectrometry, we determined that ascorbate is present at low amounts in the egg stage, L1 larvae, and mixed animal populations, with the egg stage containing the highest concentrations. Incubating C. elegans with precursor molecules necessary for ascorbate synthesis in plants and animals did not significantly alter ascorbate levels. Furthermore, bioinformatic analyses did not support the presence in C. elegans of either the plant or the animal biosynthetic pathway. However, we observed the complete 13C-labeling of ascorbate when C. elegans was grown with 13C-labeled Escherichia coli as a food source. These results support the hypothesis that ascorbate biosynthesis in invertebrates may proceed by a novel pathway and lay the foundation for a broader understanding of its biological role. PMID:25668719

  8. Cytological Analysis of Meiosis in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Phillips, Carolyn M.; McDonald, Kent L.; Dernburg, Abby F.

    2011-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has emerged as an informative experimental system for analysis of meiosis, in large part because of the advantageous physical organization of meiotic nuclei as a gradient of stages within the germline. Here we provide tools for detailed observational studies of cells within the worm gonad, including techniques for light and electron microscopy. PMID:19685325

  9. The putative chemoreceptor families of C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Robertson, Hugh M; Thomas, James H

    2006-01-01

    Chemoreception of environmental stimuli is a major sensory system in small soil nematodes like C. elegans. As in other animals, chemoreception is mediated in C. elegans by members of the seven-transmembrane G-protein-coupled receptor class (7TM GPCRs). We summarize the many large putative chemoreceptor gene families, including the str family (which includes odr-10, the only receptor with an identified ligand), and the sra, srab, srb, srbc, srd, sre, srg, srh, sri, srj, srm, srr, srsx, srt, sru, srv, srw, srx, srxa, and srz families. Together these comprise +/-1280 apparently intact genes and +/-420 apparent pseudogenes, about 7% of the total gene count of C. elegans. These genes are unusually clustered on chromosomes, both within and between families, and are enigmatically concentrated on the large chromosome V. Comparative studies with C. briggsae have revealed extraordinary divergence of the chemoreceptor repertoire between the two species, including frequent amplifications of subfamilies in C. elegans and positive selection in the srz family. The size and complexity of the chemoreceptor gene families also facilitate studies of promoter elements using paralogous and orthologous comparisons, as well as other aspects of gene family and genome evolution. PMID:18050473

  10. The invertebrate Caenorhabditis elegans biosynthesizes ascorbate.

    PubMed

    Patananan, Alexander N; Budenholzer, Lauren M; Pedraza, Maria E; Torres, Eric R; Adler, Lital N; Clarke, Steven G

    2015-03-01

    l-Ascorbate, commonly known as vitamin C, serves as an antioxidant and cofactor essential for many biological processes. Distinct ascorbate biosynthetic pathways have been established for animals and plants, but little is known about the presence or synthesis of this molecule in invertebrate species. We have investigated ascorbate metabolism in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, where this molecule would be expected to play roles in oxidative stress resistance and as cofactor in collagen and neurotransmitter synthesis. Using high-performance liquid chromatography and gas-chromatography mass spectrometry, we determined that ascorbate is present at low amounts in the egg stage, L1 larvae, and mixed animal populations, with the egg stage containing the highest concentrations. Incubating C. elegans with precursor molecules necessary for ascorbate synthesis in plants and animals did not significantly alter ascorbate levels. Furthermore, bioinformatic analyses did not support the presence in C. elegans of either the plant or the animal biosynthetic pathway. However, we observed the complete (13)C-labeling of ascorbate when C. elegans was grown with (13)C-labeled Escherichia coli as a food source. These results support the hypothesis that ascorbate biosynthesis in invertebrates may proceed by a novel pathway and lay the foundation for a broader understanding of its biological role. PMID:25668719

  11. Xenobiotic detoxification in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Lindblom, Tim H; Dodd, Allyn K

    2006-09-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is an important model organism for the study of such diverse aspects of animal physiology and behavior as embryonic development, chemoreception, and the genetic control of lifespan. Yet, even though the entire genome sequence of this organism was deposited into public databases several years ago, little is known about xenobiotic metabolism in C. elegans. In part, the paucity of detoxification information may be due to the plush life enjoyed by nematodes raised in the laboratory. In the wild, however, these animals experience a much greater array of chemical assaults. Living in the interstitial water of the soil, populations of C. elegans exhibit a boom and bust lifestyle characterized by prodigious predation of soil microbes punctuated by periods of dispersal as a non-developing alternative larval stage. During the booming periods of population expansion, these animals almost indiscriminately consume everything in their environment including any number of compounds from other animals, microorganisms, plants, and xenobiotics. Several recent studies have identified many genes encoding sensors and enzymes these nematodes may use in their xeno-coping strategies. Here, we will discuss these recent advances, as well as the efforts by our lab and others to utilize the genomic resources of the C. elegans system to elucidate this nematode's molecular defenses against toxins. PMID:16902959

  12. Guidelines for monitoring autophagy in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hong; Chang, Jessica T; Guo, Bin; Hansen, Malene; Jia, Kailiang; Kovács, Attila L; Kumsta, Caroline; Lapierre, Louis R; Legouis, Renaud; Lin, Long; Lu, Qun; Meléndez, Alicia; O'Rourke, Eyleen J; Sato, Ken; Sato, Miyuki; Wang, Xiaochen; Wu, Fan

    2015-01-01

    The cellular recycling process of autophagy has been extensively characterized with standard assays in yeast and mammalian cell lines. In multicellular organisms, numerous external and internal factors differentially affect autophagy activity in specific cell types throughout the stages of organismal ontogeny, adding complexity to the analysis of autophagy in these metazoans. Here we summarize currently available assays for monitoring the autophagic process in the nematode C. elegans. A combination of measuring levels of the lipidated Atg8 ortholog LGG-1, degradation of well-characterized autophagic substrates such as germline P granule components and the SQSTM1/p62 ortholog SQST-1, expression of autophagic genes and electron microscopy analysis of autophagic structures are presently the most informative, yet steady-state, approaches available to assess autophagy levels in C. elegans. We also review how altered autophagy activity affects a variety of biological processes in C. elegans such as L1 survival under starvation conditions, dauer formation, aging, and cell death, as well as neuronal cell specification. Taken together, C. elegans is emerging as a powerful model organism to monitor autophagy while evaluating important physiological roles for autophagy in key developmental events as well as during adulthood. PMID:25569839

  13. Basic Caenorhabditis elegans methods: synchronization and observation.

    PubMed

    Porta-de-la-Riva, Montserrat; Fontrodona, Laura; Villanueva, Alberto; Cerón, Julián

    2012-01-01

    Research into the molecular and developmental biology of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans was begun in the early seventies by Sydney Brenner and it has since been used extensively as a model organism. C. elegans possesses key attributes such as simplicity, transparency and short life cycle that have made it a suitable experimental system for fundamental biological studies for many years. Discoveries in this nematode have broad implications because many cellular and molecular processes that control animal development are evolutionary conserved. C. elegans life cycle goes through an embryonic stage and four larval stages before animals reach adulthood. Development can take 2 to 4 days depending on the temperature. In each of the stages several characteristic traits can be observed. The knowledge of its complete cell lineage together with the deep annotation of its genome turn this nematode into a great model in fields as diverse as the neurobiology, aging, stem cell biology and germ line biology. An additional feature that makes C. elegans an attractive model to work with is the possibility of obtaining populations of worms synchronized at a specific stage through a relatively easy protocol. The ease of maintaining and propagating this nematode added to the possibility of synchronization provide a powerful tool to obtain large amounts of worms, which can be used for a wide variety of small or high-throughput experiments such as RNAi screens, microarrays, massive sequencing, immunoblot or in situ hybridization, among others. Because of its transparency, C. elegans structures can be distinguished under the microscope using Differential Interference Contrast microscopy, also known as Nomarski microscopy. The use of a fluorescent DNA binder, DAPI (4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole), for instance, can lead to the specific identification and localization of individual cells, as well as subcellular structures/defects associated to them. PMID:22710399

  14. Hormetic effect of methylmercury on Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Helmcke, Kirsten J. Aschner, Michael

    2010-10-15

    Research has demonstrated the toxic effects of methylmercury (MeHg), yet molecular mechanisms underlying its toxicity are not completely understood. Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) offers a unique biological model to explore mechanisms of MeHg toxicity given many advantages associated with its ease of use and genetic power. Since our previous work indicated neurotoxic resistance of C. elegans to MeHg, the present study was designed to examine molecular mechanisms associated with this resistance. We hypothesized MeHg would induce expression of gst, hsp or mtl in vivo since glutathione (GSH), heat shock proteins (HSPs), and metallothioneins (MTs) have shown involvement in MeHg toxicity. Our studies demonstrated a modest, but significant increase in fluorescence in gst-4::GFP and mtl-1::GFP strains at an acute, low L1 MeHg exposure, whereas chronic L4 MeHg exposure induced expression of gst-4::GFP and hsp-4::GFP. Knockout gst-4 animals showed no alterations in lethality sensitivity compared to wildtype animals whereas mtl knockouts displayed increased sensitivity to MeHg exposure. GSH levels were increased by acute MeHg treatment and depleted with chronic exposure. We also demonstrate that MeHg induces hormesis, a phenotype whereby a sublethal exposure to MeHg rendered C. elegans resistant to subsequent exposure to the organometal. The involvement of gst-4, hsp-4, mtl-1, and mtl-2 in hormesis was examined. An increase in gst-4::GFP expression after a low-dose acute exposure to MeHg indicated that gst-4 may be involved in this response. Our results implicate GSH, HSPs, and MTs in protecting C. elegans from MeHg toxicity and show a potential role of gst-4 in MeHg-induced hormesis.

  15. Screening for microbial metabolites affecting phenotype of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Yamamuro, Daisuke; Uchida, Ryuji; Takahashi, Yoko; Masuma, Rokuro; Tomoda, Hiroshi

    2011-01-01

    Microbial samples, including our library of known microbial compounds (ca. 300) and microbial culture broths (ca. 9000), were screened for small molecules affecting the phenotype of Caenorhabditis elegans. As a result, seven known compounds were found to induce phenotypic abnormality of C. elegans. Staurosporine exhibited morphological defects in the vulva and tail of C. elegans, avermectin B1a exhibited hatching inhibition of starting eggs on day 1 at 25-100 µM and growth inhibition at 0.01-12.5 µM, siccanin and antimycin A inhibited the growth of C. elegans, and fluorouracil inhibited hatching of eggs newly spawned by adult C. elegans. Toromycin induced morphological defects in the intestine. 5-(4-Methoxyphenyl)-oxazole, isolated as a fungal metabolite for the first time, inhibited the hatching of eggs newly spawned by adult C. elegans. PMID:21963505

  16. Caenorhabditis elegans mutant allele identification by whole-genome sequencing.

    PubMed

    Sarin, Sumeet; Prabhu, Snehit; O'Meara, M Maggie; Pe'er, Itsik; Hobert, Oliver

    2008-10-01

    Identification of the molecular lesion in Caenorhabditis elegans mutants isolated through forward genetic screens usually involves time-consuming genetic mapping. We used Illumina deep sequencing technology to sequence a complete, mutant C. elegans genome and thus pinpointed a single-nucleotide mutation in the genome that affects a neuronal cell fate decision. This constitutes a proof-of-principle for using whole-genome sequencing to analyze C. elegans mutants. PMID:18677319

  17. Alkaloids from Lupinus argenteus var. stenophyllus.

    PubMed

    Keller, W J; Zelenski, S G

    1978-03-01

    TLC and GLC of an alkaloid extract of the aboveground portions of Lupinus argenteus Pursh. var. stenophyllus (Rydb.) Davis (Leguminosae) suggested the presence of sparteine, beta-isosparteine, delta5-dehydrolupanine, alpha-isolupanine, lupanine, thermopsine, and anagyrine. GLC-mass spectrometry confirmed these preliminary findings. Preparative TLC was used to isolate sparteine, and this alkaloid was further characterized by IR spectral analysis and derivatization. PMID:641742

  18. C. elegans in high-throughput drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    O’Reilly, Linda P.; Luke, Cliff J.; Perlmutter, David H.; Silverman, Gary A.; Pak, Stephen C.

    2014-01-01

    C. elegans has proven to be a useful model organism for investigating molecular and cellular aspects of numerous human diseases. More recently, investigators have explored the use of this organism as a tool for drug discovery. Although earlier drug screens were labor-intensive and low in throughput, recent advances in high-throughput liquid workflows, imaging platforms and data analysis software have made C. elegans a viable option for automated high-throughput drug screens. This review will outline the evolution of C. elegans-based drug screening, discuss the inherent challenges of using C. elegans, and highlight recent technological advances that have paved the way for future drug screens. PMID:24333896

  19. Why are there males in the hermaphroditic species Caenorhabditis elegans?

    PubMed Central

    Chasnov, J R; Chow, King L

    2002-01-01

    The free-living nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans reproduces primarily as a self-fertilizing hermaphrodite, yet males are maintained in wild-type populations at low frequency. To determine the role of males in C. elegans, we develop a mathematical model for the genetic system of hermaphrodites that can either self-fertilize or be fertilized by males and we perform laboratory observations and experiments on both C. elegans and a related dioecious species C. remanei. We show that the mating efficiency of C. elegans is poor compared to a dioecious species and that C. elegans males are more attracted to C. remanei females than they are to their conspecific hermaphrodites. We postulate that a genetic mutation occurred during the evolution of C. elegans hermaphrodites, resulting in the loss of an attracting sex pheromone present in the ancestor of both C. elegans and C. remanei. Our findings suggest that males are maintained in C. elegans because of the particular genetic system inherited from its dioecious ancestor and because of nonadaptive spontaneous nondisjunction of sex chromosomes, which occurs during meiosis in the hermaphrodite. A theoretical argument shows that the low frequency of male mating observed in C. elegans can support male-specific genes against mutational degeneration. This results in the continuing presence of functional males in a 99.9% hermaphroditic species in which outcrossing is disadvantageous to hermaphrodites. PMID:11901116

  20. Natural variation and population genetics of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Barrière, Antoine; Félix, Marie-Anne

    2005-01-01

    C. elegans presents a low level of molecular diversity, which may be explained by its selfing mode of reproduction. Recent work on the genetic structure of natural populations of C. elegans indeed suggests a low level of outcrossing, and little geographic differentiation because of migration. The level and pattern of molecular diversity among wild isolates of C. elegans are compared with those found after accumulation of spontaneous mutations in the laboratory. The last part of the chapter reviews phenotypic differences among wild isolates of C. elegans. PMID:18050391

  1. Heterotrimeric G proteins in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Bastiani, Carol; Mendel, Jane

    2006-01-01

    Heterotrimeric G proteins, composed of alpha, beta, and gamma subunits, are able to transduce signals from membrane receptors to a wide variety of intracellular effectors. In this role, G proteins effectively function as dimers since the signal is communicated either by the G alpha subunit or the stable G betagamma complex. When inactive, G alpha-GDP associates with G betagamma and the cytoplasmic portion of the receptor. Ligand activation of the receptor stimulates an exchange of GTP for GDP resulting in the active signaling molecules G alpha-GTP and free G betagamma, either of which can interact with effectors. Hydrolysis of GTP restores G alpha-GDP, which then reassociates with G betagamma and receptor to terminate signaling. The rate of G protein activation can be enhanced by the guanine-nucleotide exchange factor, RIC-8, while the rate of GTP hydrolysis can be enhanced by RGS proteins such as EGL-10 and EAT-16. Evidence for a receptor-independent G-protein-signaling pathway has been demonstrated in C. elegans early embryogenesis. In this pathway, the G alpha subunits GOA-1 and GPA-16 are apparently activated by the non-transmembrane proteins GPR-1, GPR-2, and RIC-8, and negatively regulated by RGS-7. The C. elegans genome encodes 21 G alpha, 2 G beta and 2 G gamma subunits. The alpha subunits include one ortholog of each mammalian G alpha family: GSA-1 (Gs), GOA-1 (Gi/o), EGL-30 (Gq) and GPA-12 (G12). The remaining C. elegans alpha subunits (GPA-1, GPA-2, GPA-3, GPA-4, GPA-5, GPA-6, GPA-7, GPA-8, GPA-9, GPA-10, GPA-11, GPA-13, GPA-14, GPA-15, GPA-16, GPA-17 and ODR-3) are most similar to the Gi/o family, but do not share sufficient homology to allow classification. The conserved G alpha subunits, with the exception of GPA-12, are expressed broadly while 14 of the new G alpha genes are expressed in subsets of chemosensory neurons. Consistent with their expression patterns, the conserved C. elegans alpha subunits, GSA-1, GOA-1 and EGL-30 are involved in diverse and fundamental aspects of development and behavior. GOA-1 acts redundantly with GPA-16 in positioning of the mitotic spindle in early embryos. EGL-30 and GSA-1 are required for viability starting from the first larval stage. In addition to their roles in development and behaviors such as egg laying and locomotion, the EGL-30, GSA-1 and GOA-1 pathways interact in a network to regulate acetylcholine release by the ventral cord motor neurons. EGL-30 provides the core signals for vesicle release, GOA-1 negatively regulates the EGL-30 pathway, and GSA-1 modulates this pathway, perhaps by providing positional cues. Constitutively activated GPA-12 affects pharyngeal pumping. The G alpha subunits unique to C. elegans are primarily involved in chemosensation. The G beta subunit, GPB-1, as well as the G gamma subunit, GPC-2, appear to function along with the alpha subunits in the classic G protein heterotrimer. The remaining G beta subunit, GPB-2, is thought to regulate the function of certain RGS proteins, while the remaining G gamma subunit, GPC-1, has a restricted role in chemosensation. The functional difference for most G protein pathways in C. elegans, therefore, resides in the alpha subunit. Many cells in C. elegans express multiple G alpha subunits, and multiple G protein pathways are known to function in specific cell types. For example, Go, Gq and Gs-mediated signaling occurs in the ventral cord motor neurons. Similarly, certain amphid neurons use multiple G protein pathways to both positively and negatively regulate chemosensation. C. elegans thus provides a powerful model for the study of interactions between and regulation of G protein signaling. PMID:18050432

  2. The laboratory domestication of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Sterken, Mark G; Snoek, L Basten; Kammenga, Jan E; Andersen, Erik C

    2015-05-01

    Model organisms are of great importance to our understanding of basic biology and to making advances in biomedical research. However, the influence of laboratory cultivation on these organisms is underappreciated, and especially how that environment can affect research outcomes. Recent experiments led to insights into how the widely used laboratory reference strain of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans compares with natural strains. Here we describe potential selective pressures that led to the fixation of laboratory-derived alleles for the genes npr-1, glb-5, and nath-10. These alleles influence a large number of traits, resulting in behaviors that affect experimental interpretations. Furthermore, strong phenotypic effects caused by these laboratory-derived alleles hinder the discovery of natural alleles. We highlight strategies to reduce the influence of laboratory-derived alleles and to harness the full power of C. elegans. PMID:25804345

  3. Isolation of C. elegans and related nematodes.

    PubMed

    Barrière, Antoine; Félix, Marie-Anne

    2014-01-01

    Isolating Caenorhabditis and other nematodes from the wild first requires field sampling (reviewed in Section 1). The easiest and most efficient way to recover the animals from any substrate is to place the sample onto a standard C. elegans culture plate (Section 2.1). Alternative methods used by nematologists to recover soil nematodes (Sections 2.2, 2.3, and 2.4) are in our hands more difficult to implement and only yield a fraction of the individuals in the sample. A tricky step is to recognize your species of interest out of the zoo of nematode species that comes with a typical sample (Section 3). Culture (Section 4) and freezing (Section 5) conditions are then reviewed. Finally, we briefly summarize the organization and timing of an isolation experiment (Section 6), as well as the available collections (Section 7). Bear in mind that this chapter is strongly focused towards the isolation of Caenorhabditis elegans and close relatives. PMID:24803426

  4. Locomotion of C elegans in structured environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majmudar, Trushant; Keaveny, Eric; Shelley, Michael; Zhang, Jun

    2011-11-01

    We have established a combined experimental and numerical platform to study the swimming dynamics of an undulating worm in structured environments (fluid-filled micro-pillar arrays). We have shown that the worm (C. elegans) swims with different velocity and frequency depending on the lattice spacing and our purely mechanistic simulations (elastically linked bead-chain) reproduce the experimental results qualitatively and quantitatively, including ``life-like'' trajectories the worm exhibits. We build upon this platform to investigate more complex environments, such as linear and radial lattices, with gradients in spacing. In addition, we study C. elegans mutants to investigate the role of length of the worm, frequency of undulations, and mechano-sensation on the resultant dynamics. We also examine the worm moving through a lattice with random distribution of obstacles - a model soil-like environment. Our combined experimental and simulations approach allows us to gain insights into the dynamics of locomotion of undulating microorganisms in realistic complex environments.

  5. Nuclear hormone receptors in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Antebi, Adam

    2006-01-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) are transcription factors typically regulated by lipophilic hormones, which coordinate metazoan metabolism, development and homeostasis. C. elegans has undergone a remarkable expansion of the family, harboring 284 of these receptors in its genome. Approximately 20 of them have been analyzed genetically, most of which correspond to conserved homologs in other metazoans. These NRs variously affect broad life history traits such as sex determination, molting, developmental timing, diapause, and life span. They also impact neural development, axon outgrowth and neuronal identity. Finally, they influence lipid and xenobiotic metabolism. The study of C. elegans NRs holds great promise for dissecting nuclear receptor signaling pathways in vivo in the context of complex endocrine networks. PMID:18050471

  6. Transcriptional responses to pathogens in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Shivers, Robert P.; Youngman, Matthew J.; Kim, Dennis H.

    2008-01-01

    Summary Evolutionarily conserved signaling pathways, such as the p38 and ERK MAPK pathways, the TGF-? pathway, and the insulin signaling pathway are required for resistance to pathogens in C. elegans. Recent microarray expression profiling studies have identified both candidate immune effector genes which may recognize and eliminate microbial pathogens as well as uncharacterized gene classes that are broadly induced in response to pathogen. Comparative analysis of these microarray studies is suggestive of basal versus induced components of the ancient innate immune response in C. elegans. In particular, whereas the PMK-1 p38 MAPK pathway regulates genes that are induced by pathogen, the Forkhead family transcription factor DAF-16 confers pathogen resistance through the regulation of genes that are non-overlapping with pathogen-induced genes. PMID:18567532

  7. Metal-induced neurodegeneration in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Pan; Martinez-Finley, Ebany J.; Bornhorst, Julia; Chakraborty, Sudipta; Aschner, Michael

    2013-01-01

    The model species, Caenorhabditis elegans, has been used as a tool to probe for mechanisms underlying numerous neurodegenerative diseases. This use has been exploited to study neurodegeneration induced by metals. The allure of the nematode comes from the ease of genetic manipulation, the ability to fluorescently label neuronal subtypes, and the relative simplicity of the nervous system. Notably, C. elegans have approximately 60–80% of human genes and contain genes involved in metal homeostasis and transport, allowing for the study of metal-induced degeneration in the nematode. This review discusses methods to assess degeneration as well as outlines techniques for genetic manipulation and presents a comprehensive survey of the existing literature on metal-induced degeneration studies in the worm. PMID:23730287

  8. RNASeq in C. elegans Following Manganese Exposure.

    PubMed

    Parmalee, Nancy L; Maqbool, Shahina B; Ye, Bin; Calder, Brent; Bowman, Aaron B; Aschner, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Manganese is a metal that is required for optimal biological functioning of organisms. Absorption, cellular import and export, and excretion of manganese are all tightly regulated. While some genes involved in regulation, such as DMT-1 and ferroportin, are known, it is presumed that many more are involved and as yet unknown. Excessive exposure to manganese, usually in industrial settings such as mining or welding, can lead to neurotoxicity and a condition known as manganism that closely resembles Parkinson's disease. Elucidating transcriptional changes following manganese exposure could lead to the development of biomarkers for exposure. This unit presents a protocol for RNA sequencing in the worm Caenorhabditis elegans to assay for transcriptional changes following exposure to manganese. This protocol is adaptable to any environmental exposure in C. elegans. The protocol results in counts of gene transcripts in control versus exposed conditions and a ranked list of differentially expressed genes for further study. PMID:26250396

  9. Lamin-Binding Proteins in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Dobrzynska, Agnieszka; Askjaer, Peter; Gruenbaum, Yosef

    2016-01-01

    The nuclear lamina, composed of lamins and numerous lamin-associated proteins, is required for mechanical stability, mechanosensing, chromatin organization, developmental gene regulation, mRNA transcription, DNA replication, nuclear assembly, and nuclear positioning. Mutations in lamins or lamin-binding proteins cause at least 18 distinct human diseases that affect specific tissues such as muscle, adipose, bone, nerve, or skin, and range from muscular dystrophies to lipodystrophy, peripheral neuropathy, or accelerated aging. Caenorhabditis elegans has unique advantages in studying lamin-binding proteins. These advantages include the low complexity of genes encoding lamin and lamin-binding proteins, advanced transgenic techniques, simple application of RNA interference, sophisticated genetic strategies, and a large collection of mutant lines. This chapter provides detailed and comprehensive protocols for the genetic and phenotypic analysis of lamin-binding proteins in C. elegans. PMID:26778571

  10. Mechanisms of iron metabolism in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Cole P.; Leibold, Elizabeth A.

    2014-01-01

    Iron is involved in many biological processes essential for sustaining life. In excess, iron is toxic due to its ability to catalyze the formation of free radicals that damage macromolecules. Organisms have developed specialized mechanisms to tightly regulate iron uptake, storage and efflux. Over the past decades, vertebrate model organisms have led to the identification of key genes and pathways that regulate systemic and cellular iron metabolism. This review provides an overview of iron metabolism in the roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans and highlights recent studies on the role of hypoxia and insulin signaling in the regulation of iron metabolism. Given that iron, hypoxia and insulin signaling pathways are evolutionarily conserved, C. elegans provides a genetic model organism that promises to provide new insights into mechanisms regulating mammalian iron metabolism. PMID:24904417

  11. Measurements of behavioral quiescence in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Nagy, Stanislav; Raizen, David M.; Biron, David

    2014-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis (C.) elegans, a long time work horse for behavioral genetic studies of locomotion, has recently been studied for quiescent behavior. Methods previously established for the study of C. elegans locomotion are not well-suited for the study of quiescent behavior. We describe in detail two computer vision approaches to distinguish quiescent from movement bouts focusing on the behavioral quiescence that occurs during fourth larval stage lethargus, a transition stage between the larva and the adult. The first is the frame subtraction method, which consists of subtraction of temporally adjacent images as a sensitive way to detect motion. The second, which is more computationally intensive, is the posture analysis method, which consists of analysis of the rate of local angle change of the animal’s body. Quiescence measurements should be done continuously while minimizing sensory perturbation of the animal. PMID:24642199

  12. Proteomics applications in Caenorhabditis elegans research.

    PubMed

    Husson, Steven J; Moyson, Sofie; Valkenborg, Dirk; Baggerman, Geert; Mertens, Inge

    2015-12-25

    The free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is one of the most studied models in a wide variety of research fields with applications in agro- or pharmaceutical industries. It has been used for the development of new anthelminthic drugs and was proven to yield key insights in neurodegenerative diseases and metabolic syndromes. Due to its suitability for high-throughput genetic screens, efficiency for RNA interference approaches and the availability of thousands of mutants, most studies were carried out at the genetic level. However, determining the cellular function of each gene product remains an unfinished goal in this post-genomic era. A systems biology approach focusing on the actual gene products (i.e. proteins) can help unraveling this puzzle. A fundamental pillar in this research is mass spectrometry-based proteomics. We here provide an in-depth overview of proteomics-related studies in C. elegans research, with special emphasis on the methodologies and biological applications. PMID:26585491

  13. A database of C. elegans behavioral phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    Yemini, Eviatar; Jucikas, Tadas; Grundy, Laura J.; Brown, André E.X.; Schafer, William R.

    2014-01-01

    Using low-cost automated tracking microscopes, we have generated a behavioral database for 305 C. elegans strains, including 76 mutants with no previously described phenotype. The database consists of 9,203 short videos segmented to extract behavior and morphology features that are available online for further analysis. The database also includes summary statistics for 702 measures with statistical comparisons to wild-type controls so that phenotypes can be identified and understood by users. PMID:23852451

  14. Accurate biometal quantification per individual Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Ganio, Katherine; James, Simon A; Hare, Dominic J; Roberts, Blaine R; McColl, Gawain

    2016-02-01

    In the life sciences, small model-organisms are an established research platform. Due to the economy of culturing and maintenance animals such as the roundworm Caenorhabditis elegans, and the fly Drosophila melanogaster, have been instrumental for investigating key genetic pathways, early development, neuronal function, as well as disease pathogenesis and toxicology. Small model organisms have also found utility in the study of inorganic biochemistry, where the role of metal ion cofactors are investigated for numerous fundamental cellular processes. The metabolism and homeostasis of metal ions is also central to many aspects of biology and disease. Accurate quantification of endogenous metal ion content is an important determinant for many biological questions. There is currently no standardised method for quantifying biometal content in individual C. elegans or estimating the variation between individuals within clonal populations. Here, we have determined that ten or more adults are required to quantify physiologically important metals via inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The accuracy and precision of this method was then compared to synchrotron-based X-ray fluorescence microscopy (XFM) to determine the variation between isogenic, developmentally synchronous C. elegans adults. PMID:26811851

  15. Nucleotide Excision Repair in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Lans, Hannes; Vermeulen, Wim

    2011-01-01

    Nucleotide excision repair (NER) plays an essential role in many organisms across life domains to preserve and faithfully transmit DNA to the next generation. In humans, NER is essential to prevent DNA damage-induced mutation accumulation and cell death leading to cancer and aging. NER is a versatile DNA repair pathway that repairs many types of DNA damage which distort the DNA helix, such as those induced by solar UV light. A detailed molecular model of the NER pathway has emerged from in vitro and live cell experiments, particularly using model systems such as bacteria, yeast, and mammalian cell cultures. In recent years, the versatility of the nematode C. elegans to study DNA damage response (DDR) mechanisms including NER has become increasingly clear. In particular, C. elegans seems to be a convenient tool to study NER during the UV response in vivo, to analyze this process in the context of a developing and multicellular organism, and to perform genetic screening. Here, we will discuss current knowledge gained from the use of C. elegans to study NER and the response to UV-induced DNA damage. PMID:22091407

  16. CLC chloride channels in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Schriever, A M; Friedrich, T; Pusch, M; Jentsch, T J

    1999-11-26

    The genome of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans encodes six putative chloride channels (CeCLC-1 through CeCLC-6) that represent all three known branches of the mammalian CLC gene family. Using promoter fragments to drive the expression of the green fluorescent protein, CeCLC-2, -3, and -4 expression was studied in transgenic C. elegans. CeCLC-4 was specifically expressed in the large H-shaped excretory cell, where it was co-expressed with CeCLC-3, which is also expressed in other cells, including neurons, muscles, and epithelial cells. Also, CeCLC-2 was expressed in several cells of the nervous system, intestinal cells, and vulval muscle cells. Similar to mammalian CLC proteins, only two nematode CLC channels elicited detectable plasma membrane currents in Xenopus oocytes. CeCLC-3 currents were inwardly rectifying and were activated by positive prepulses. Its complex gating behavior can be explained by two gates, at least one of which depends on extracellular anions. In this respect it resembles some mammalian chloride channels with which it also shares a preference of chloride over iodide. C. elegans thus provides new opportunities to understand common mechanisms underlying structure and function in CLC channels and will allow for a genetic dissection of chloride channels in this simple model organism. PMID:10567397

  17. Acute carbon dioxide avoidance in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Hallem, Elissa A; Sternberg, Paul W

    2008-06-10

    Carbon dioxide is produced as a by-product of cellular respiration by all aerobic organisms and thus serves for many animals as an important indicator of food, mates, and predators. However, whether free-living terrestrial nematodes such as Caenorhabditis elegans respond to CO2 was unclear. We have demonstrated that adult C. elegans display an acute avoidance response upon exposure to CO2 that is characterized by the cessation of forward movement and the rapid initiation of backward movement. This response is mediated by a cGMP signaling pathway that includes the cGMP-gated heteromeric channel TAX-2/TAX-4. CO2 avoidance is modulated by multiple signaling molecules, including the neuropeptide Y receptor NPR-1 and the calcineurin subunits TAX-6 and CNB-1. Nutritional status also modulates CO2 responsiveness via the insulin and TGFbeta signaling pathways. CO2 response is mediated by a neural circuit that includes the BAG neurons, a pair of sensory neurons of previously unknown function. TAX-2/TAX-4 function in the BAG neurons to mediate acute CO2 avoidance. Our results demonstrate that C. elegans senses and responds to CO2 using multiple signaling pathways and a neural network that includes the BAG neurons and that this response is modulated by the physiological state of the worm. PMID:18524955

  18. Control of Neuronal Network in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Badhwar, Rahul; Bagler, Ganesh

    2015-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans, a soil dwelling nematode, is evolutionarily rudimentary and contains only ? 300 neurons which are connected to each other via chemical synapses and gap junctions. This structural connectivity can be perceived as nodes and edges of a graph. Controlling complex networked systems (such as nervous system) has been an area of excitement for mankind. Various methods have been developed to identify specific brain regions, which when controlled by external input can lead to achievement of control over the state of the system. But in case of neuronal connectivity network the properties of neurons identified as driver nodes is of much importance because nervous system can produce a variety of states (behaviour of the animal). Hence to gain insight on the type of control achieved in nervous system we implemented the notion of structural control from graph theory to C. elegans neuronal network. We identified ‘driver neurons’ which can provide full control over the network. We studied phenotypic properties of these neurons which are referred to as ‘phenoframe’ as well as the ‘genoframe’ which represents their genetic correlates. We find that the driver neurons are primarily motor neurons located in the ventral nerve cord and contribute to biological reproduction of the animal. Identification of driver neurons and its characterization adds a new dimension in controllability of C. elegans neuronal network. This study suggests the importance of driver neurons and their utility to control the behaviour of the organism. PMID:26413834

  19. Toxicological Effects of Fullerenes on Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schomaker, Justin; Snook, Renee; Howell, Carina

    2014-03-01

    The nematode species Caenorhabditis elegans is a useful genetic model organism due to its simplicity and the substantial molecular, genetic, and developmental knowledge about the species. In this study, this species was used to test the toxicological effects of C60 fullerene nanoparticles. In previous studies using rats, a solution of C60 fullerenes in olive oil proved to extend the life of the subjects. The purpose of this experiment was to subject C. elegans to varying concentrations of C60 fullerenes and observe their toxicological effects. Initial findings indicate a link between fullerene exposure and enlargement of the vulva as well as the formation of a small nodule at the base of the tail in some individuals. While the fullerenes are not lethally toxic in C. elegans, results will be presented that pertain to changes in life span and progeny of the nematodes exposed to varying concentrations of fullerenes as well as the mechanisms of toxicity. High magnification imaging via SEM and/or AFM will be used to characterize the fullerene nanoparticles. Testing the toxicity of fullerenes in a wide variety of organisms will lead to a more complete understanding of the effects of fullerenes on living organisms to ultimately understand their effects in humans. This work was supported by National Science Foundation grants DUE-1058829, DMR-0923047, DUE-0806660 and Lock Haven FPDC grants.

  20. DNA Damage Sensitivity Assays in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyun-Min; Colaiácovo, Monica P.

    2016-01-01

    C. elegans has served as a genetically tractable multicellular model system to examine DNA damage-induced genotoxic stress which threatens genome integrity. Importantly, the high degree of conservation shared between worms and humans offers the advantage that findings about DNA damage-induced cell cycle arrest/checkpoint response and DNA double-strand break repair in worms are applicable to human studies. Here, we describe simple DNA damage sensitivity assays to quantify the response of C. elegans to diverse types of DNA damaging agents. These assays have provided important insights into the mechanisms of function for factors such as ZTF-8 that are involved in DNA damage repair and response in the C. elegans germline. These DNA damage sensitivity assays rely on the straightforward readouts of either egg or larval lethality and involve the use of various DNA damaging agents. We use γ-irradiation (γ-IR), which produces DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), camptothecin (CPT), which induces single-strand breaks, nitrogen mustard (HN2), which produces interstrand crosslinks (ICLs), hydroxyurea (HU), which results in replication fork arrest thus preventing DNA synthesis, and UV-C, which causes photoproducts (pyrimidine dimers). See Table 1. Comparisons between the relative sensitivity/resistance observed in, for example, mutants compared to wild type, for various DNA damaging agents allows for inferences regarding potential repair pathways being affected. PMID:26807430

  1. Stable nuclear transformation of Eudorina elegans

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background A fundamental step in evolution was the transition from unicellular to differentiated, multicellular organisms. Volvocine algae have been used for several decades as a model lineage to investigate the evolutionary aspects of multicellularity and cellular differentiation. There are two well-studied volvocine species, a unicellular alga (Chlamydomonas reinhardtii) and a multicellular alga with differentiated cell types (Volvox carteri). Species with intermediate characteristics also exist, which blur the boundaries between unicellularity and differentiated multicellularity. These species include the globular alga Eudorina elegans, which is composed of 16–32 cells. However, detailed molecular analyses of E. elegans require genetic manipulation. Unfortunately, genetic engineering has not yet been established for Eudorina, and only limited DNA and/or protein sequence information is available. Results Here, we describe the stable nuclear transformation of E. elegans by particle bombardment using both a chimeric selectable marker and reporter genes from different heterologous sources. Transgenic algae resistant to paromomycin were achieved using the aminoglycoside 3′-phosphotransferase VIII (aphVIII) gene of Streptomyces rimosus, an actinobacterium, under the control of an artificial promoter consisting of two V. carteri promoters in tandem. Transformants exhibited an increase in resistance to paromomycin by up to 333-fold. Co-transformation with non-selectable plasmids was achieved with a rate of 50 - 100%. The luciferase (gluc) gene from the marine copepod Gaussia princeps, which previously was engineered to match the codon usage of C. reinhardtii, was used as a reporter gene. The expression of gluc was mediated by promoters from C. reinhardtii and V. carteri. Heterologous heat shock promoters induced an increase in luciferase activity (up to 600-fold) at elevated temperatures. Long-term stability and both constitutive and inducible expression of the co-bombarded gluc gene was demonstrated by transcription analysis and bioluminescence assays. Conclusions Heterologous flanking sequences, including promoters, work in E. elegans and permit both constitutive and inducible expression of heterologous genes. Stable nuclear transformation of E. elegans is now routine. Thus, we show that genetic engineering of a species is possible even without the resources of endogenous genes and promoters. PMID:23402598

  2. Katz model prediction of Caenorhabditis elegans mutagenesis on STS-42

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cucinotta, Francis A.; Wilson, John W.; Katz, Robert; Badhwar, Gautam D.

    1992-01-01

    Response parameters that describe the production of recessive lethal mutations in C. elegans from ionizing radiation are obtained with the Katz track structure model. The authors used models of the space radiation environment and radiation transport to predict and discuss mutation rates for C. elegans on the IML-1 experiment aboard STS-42.

  3. INHIBITION OF STEROL METABOLISM IN CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS BY AY-9944

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Caenorhabditis elegans and some other nematodes are capable of attaching a methyl group to the nucleus of sterols at the C-4 position. In C. elegans, 4-methylcholest-8(14)-enol is the most abundant 4-methylsterol produced, and smaller quantities of 4-methylcholest-7-enol also occur. The purpose of...

  4. Formation of Phosphoglycosides in Caenorhabditis elegans: A Novel Biotransformation Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Grünz, Gregor; Bunzel, Diana; Daniel, Hannelore; Kulling, Sabine E.

    2012-01-01

    Background Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) has become a widely used model to explore the effect of food constituents on health as well as on life-span extension. The results imply that besides essential nutrients several flavonoids are able to impact the aging process. What is less investigated is the bioavailability and biotransformation of these compounds in C. elegans. In the present study, we focused on the soy isoflavone genistein and its metabolism in the nematode as a basis for assessing whether this model system mimics the mammalian condition. Principal Findings C. elegans was exposed to 100 µM genistein for 48 hours. The worm homogenate was extracted and analyzed by liquid chromatography (LC). 11 metabolites of genistein were detected and characterized using LC electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. All genistein metabolites formed by C. elegans were found to be sugar conjugates, primarily genistein-O-glucosides. The dominant metabolite was identified as genistein-7-O-phosphoglucoside. Further interesting metabolites include two genistein-di-O-glycosides, a genistein-O-disaccharide as well as a genistein-O-phosphodisaccharide. Conclusions/Significance Our study provides evidence for a novel biotransformation pathway in C. elegans leading to conjugative metabolites which are not known for mammals. The metabolism of genistein in mammals and in C. elegans differs widely which may greatly impact the bioactivity. These differences need to be appropriately taken into consideration when C. elegans is used as a model to assess possible health or aging effects. PMID:23082135

  5. Caenorhabditis elegans chemical biology: lessons from small molecules

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    How can we complement Caenorhabditis elegans genomics and proteomics with a comprehensive structural and functional annotation of its metabolome? Several lines of evidence indicate that small molecules of largely undetermined structure play important roles in C. elegans biology, including key pathw...

  6. MAP kinase cascades regulating axon regeneration in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Pastuhov, Strahil Iv; Hisamoto, Naoki; Matsumoto, Kunihiro

    2015-01-01

    Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling cascades are activated by diverse stimuli such as growth factors, cytokines, neurotransmitters and various types of cellular stress. Our evolving understanding of these signal cascades has been facilitated by genetic analyses and physiological characterization in model organisms such as the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetic and biochemical studies in C. elegans have shed light on the physiological roles of MAPK cascades in the control of cell fate decision, neuronal function and immunity. Recently it was demonstrated that MAPK signaling is also important for axon regeneration in C. elegans, and the use of C. elegans as a model system has significantly advanced our understanding of the largely conserved molecular mechanisms underlying axon regeneration. This review summarizes our current understanding of the role and regulation of MAPK signaling in C. elegans axon regeneration. PMID:25792136

  7. Neurodegenerative disorders: insights from the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Dimitriadi, Maria; Hart, Anne C.

    2010-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases impose a burden on society, yet for the most part, the mechanisms underlying neuronal dysfunction and death in these disorders remain unclear despite the identification of relevant disease genes. Given the molecular conservation in neuronal signaling pathways across vertebrate and invertebrate species, many researchers have turned to the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans to identify the mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disease pathology. C. elegans can be engineered to express human proteins associated with neurodegeneration; additionally, the function of C. elegans orthologs of human neurodegenerative disease genes can be dissected. Herein, we examine major C. elegans neurodegeneration models that recapitulate many aspects of human neurodegenerative disease and we survey the screens that have identified modifier genes. This review highlights how the C. elegans community has used this versatile organism to model several aspects of human neurodegeneration and how these studies have contributed to our understanding of human disease. PMID:20493260

  8. The Caenorhabiditis elegans model as a reliable tool in neurotoxicology.

    PubMed

    Avila, Daiana; Helmcke, Kirsten; Aschner, Michael

    2012-03-01

    Caenorhabiditis elegans (C. elegans) offers an attractive experimental platform as it has a short life cycle, is inexpensive to maintain and most importantly has high degree of evolutionary conservation with higher eukaryotes. Understanding the contribution of inherent genes that regulate neurotoxicity and antioxidant stress responses in the worm provides critical insight into mechanisms of mammalian neurotoxicity. The C. elegans model readily enables multi-gene approach, allowing for combinatorial genetic variation to be studied within the context of the influence of multigenic polymorphisms in environmental risk and vulnerability. This review provides a synopsis of recent studies on metal and pesticides toxicity in C. elegans, highlighting the utility of the model system in understanding molecular mechanisms that underlie developmental, reproductive and neuronal damage. The continuation of these investigations combining basic toxicological experimentation with novel genetic and high throughput methods will continue to make C. elegans an invaluable tool for future research, providing insight into molecular and cellular mechanisms of toxicity. PMID:21148196

  9. MAP kinase cascades regulating axon regeneration in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    PASTUHOV, Strahil Iv.; HISAMOTO, Naoki; MATSUMOTO, Kunihiro

    2015-01-01

    Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling cascades are activated by diverse stimuli such as growth factors, cytokines, neurotransmitters and various types of cellular stress. Our evolving understanding of these signal cascades has been facilitated by genetic analyses and physiological characterization in model organisms such as the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetic and biochemical studies in C. elegans have shed light on the physiological roles of MAPK cascades in the control of cell fate decision, neuronal function and immunity. Recently it was demonstrated that MAPK signaling is also important for axon regeneration in C. elegans, and the use of C. elegans as a model system has significantly advanced our understanding of the largely conserved molecular mechanisms underlying axon regeneration. This review summarizes our current understanding of the role and regulation of MAPK signaling in C. elegans axon regeneration. PMID:25792136

  10. Receptor-mediated Endocytosis in the Caenorhabditis elegans Oocyte

    PubMed Central

    Grant, Barth; Hirsh, David

    1999-01-01

    The Caenorhabditis elegans oocyte is a highly amenable system for forward and reverse genetic analysis of receptor-mediated endocytosis. We describe the use of transgenic strains expressing a vitellogenin::green fluorescent protein (YP170::GFP) fusion to monitor yolk endocytosis by the C. elegans oocyte in vivo. This YP170::GFP reporter was used to assay the functions of C. elegans predicted proteins homologous to vertebrate endocytosis factors using RNA-mediated interference. We show that the basic components and pathways of endocytic trafficking are conserved between C. elegans and vertebrates, and that this system can be used to test the endocytic functions of any new gene. We also used the YP170::GFP assay to identify rme (receptor-mediated endocytosis) mutants. We describe a new member of the low-density lipoprotein receptor superfamily, RME-2, identified in our screens for endocytosis defective mutants. We show that RME-2 is the C. elegans yolk receptor. PMID:10588660

  11. The Caenorhabditis elegans lipidome: A primer for lipid analysis in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Witting, Michael; Schmitt-Kopplin, Philippe

    2016-01-01

    Lipids play important roles in biology, ranging from building blocks of membranes to signaling lipids. The nematode and model organism Caenorhabditis elegans has been used to explore lipid metabolism and several techniques for their analysis have been employed. These techniques include different possibilities ranging from visualization of lipid droplets, analysis of total fatty acids to analysis of complex lipids using lipidomics approaches. Lipidomics evolved from metabolomics, the latest off-spring of the "omics"-technologies and aims to characterize the lipid content of a given organism or system. Although being an extensively studied model organism, only a few applications of lipidomics to C. elegans have been reported to far, but the number is steadily increasing with more applications expected in the near future. This review gives an overview on the C. elegans lipidome, lipid classes it contains and ways to analyze them. It serves as primer for scientists interested in studying lipids in this model organism and list methods used so far and what information can be derived from them. Lastly, challenges and future (methodological) research directions, together with new methods potentially useful for C. elegans lipid research are discussed. PMID:26072113

  12. C. elegans locomotion: small circuits, complex functions.

    PubMed

    Zhen, Mei; Samuel, Aravinthan D T

    2015-08-01

    With 302 neurons in the adult Caenorhabditis elegans nervous system, it should be possible to build models of complex behaviors spanning sensory input to motor output. The logic of the motor circuit is an essential component of such models. Advances in physiological, anatomical, and neurogenetic analysis are revealing a surprisingly complex signaling network in the worm's small motor circuit. We are progressing towards a systems level dissection of the network of premotor interneurons, motor neurons, and muscle cells that move the animal forward and backward in its environment. PMID:25845627

  13. Transformation of Amoxapine by Cunninghamella elegans

    PubMed Central

    Moody, Joanna D.; Zhang, Donglu; Heinze, Thomas M.; Cerniglia, Carl E.

    2000-01-01

    We examined Cunninghamella elegans to determine its ability to transform amoxapine, a tricyclic antidepressant belonging to the dibenzoxazepine class of drugs. Approximately 57% of the exogenous amoxapine was metabolized to three metabolites that were isolated by high-performance liquid chromatography and were identified by nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry as 7-hydroxyamoxapine (48%), N-formyl-7-hydroxyamoxapine (31%), and N-formylamoxapine (21%). 7-Hydroxyamoxapine, a mammalian metabolite with biological activity, now can be produced in milligram quantities for toxicological evaluation. PMID:10919836

  14. Nuclear receptor signal transduction in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Antebi, Adam

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear receptors are transcription factors that often respond to small molecule metabolites and fat-soluble compounds to regulate gene expression. They broadly govern development, reproduction, metabolism, and homeostasis in diverse metazoan species and their dysregulation is associated with numerous diseases. Work in C. elegans has shed light on the seminal role of nuclear receptors in life history regulation, stem cell progression, developmental timing, cell fate specification, nutrient sensing, metabolism, and longevity. Here we highlight recent advances on the best-studied nuclear receptors in the worm, and how they illuminate metazoan biology. PMID:26069085

  15. Endogenous RNAi pathways in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Billi, Allison C; Fischer, Sylvia E J; Kim, John K

    2014-01-01

    In addition to several hundred microRNAs, C. elegans produces thousands of other small RNAs targeting coding genes, pseudogenes, transposons, and other noncoding RNAs. Here we review what is currently known about these endogenous small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs), providing an overview of their biogenesis, their associated protein factors, and their effects on mRNA dynamics and chromatin structure. Additionally, we describe how the molecular actions of these classes of endogenous small RNAs connect to their physiological roles in the organism. PMID:24816713

  16. Characterization of the effects of methylmercury on Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Helmcke, Kirsten J.; Syversen, Tore; Miller, David M.; Aschner, Michael

    2009-10-15

    The rising prevalence of methylmercury (MeHg) in seafood and in the global environment provides an impetus for delineating the mechanism of the toxicity of MeHg. Deleterious effects of MeHg have been widely observed in humans and in other mammals, the most striking of which occur in the nervous system. Here we test the model organism, Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), for MeHg toxicity. The simple, well-defined anatomy of the C. elegans nervous system and its ready visualization with green fluorescent protein (GFP) markers facilitated our study of the effects of methylmercuric chloride (MeHgCl) on neural development. Although MeHgCl was lethal to C. elegans, induced a developmental delay, and decreased pharyngeal pumping, other traits including lifespan, brood size, swimming rate, and nervous system morphology were not obviously perturbed in animals that survived MeHgCl exposure. Despite the limited effects of MeHgCl on C. elegans development and behavior, intracellular mercury (Hg) concentrations ({<=} 3 ng Hg/mg protein) in MeHgCl-treated nematodes approached levels that are highly toxic to mammals. If MeHgCl reaches these concentrations throughout the animal, this finding indicates that C. elegans cells, particularly neurons, may be less sensitive to MeHgCl toxicity than mammalian cells. We propose, therefore, that C. elegans should be a useful model for discovering intrinsic mechanisms that confer resistance to MeHgCl exposure.

  17. Influence of planktonic and sessile Listeria monocytogenes on Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Guha, Sujay; Klees, Miranda; Wang, Xiaoxia; Li, Jing; Dong, Yuqing; Cao, Min

    2013-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is the etiologic agent of listeriosis, a food-borne disease affecting humans and a variety of animals. In order to combat this pathogen, it is crucial to have an understanding of its natural interplay with the environment. For this reason, the free soil nematode Caenorhabditis elegans was focused upon because of its shared natural habitat with Listeria and its potential as a model organism for Listeria pathogenesis. Previous studies have generated some contradictory results on Listeria's ability to kill C. elegans, making additional interaction studies such as this more attractive. In our study, we carried out a series of killing assays in a systematic manner using different Listeria strains under different growth conditions. In addition to studying the effects of planktonic cells, we examined the interaction between C. elegans and sessile listerial cells. Our findings suggest that, rather than causing infection and death, L. monocytogenes may extend the life span of C. elegans. This indicates that Listeria is not pathogenic to C. elegans. We also found that C. elegans can feed and ingest sessile cells, as well as carry the pathogen in its gut, implying that C. elegans could be a vehicle for L. monocytogenes spread in the environment. PMID:22961596

  18. Caenorhabditis elegans as a model for intracellular pathogen infection

    PubMed Central

    Balla, Keir M.; Troemel, Emily R.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The genetically tractable nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a convenient host for studies of pathogen infection. With the recent identification of two types of natural intracellular pathogens of C. elegans, this host now provides the opportunity to examine interactions and defence against intracellular pathogens in a whole-animal model for infection. C. elegans is the natural host for a genus of microsporidia, which comprise a phylum of fungal-related pathogens of widespread importance for agriculture and medicine. More recently, C. elegans has been shown to be a natural host for viruses related to the Nodaviridae family. Both microsporidian and viral pathogens infect the C. elegans intestine, which is composed of cells that share striking similarities to human intestinal epithelial cells. Because C. elegans nematodes are transparent, these infections provide a unique opportunity to visualize differentiated intestinal cells in vivo during the course of intracellular infection. Together, these two natural pathogens of C. elegans provide powerful systems in which to study microbial pathogenesis and host responses to intracellular infection. PMID:23617769

  19. Caenorhabditis elegans as a model for obesity research.

    PubMed

    Zheng, J; Greenway, F L

    2012-02-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is a small nematode that conserves 65% of the genes associated with human disease, has a 21-day lifespan, reproductive cycles of 3 days, large brood sizes, lives in an agar dish and does not require committee approvals for experimentation. Research using C. elegans is encouraged and a Caenorhabditis Genetics Center (CGC, Minnesota) is funded by the National Institutes of Health-National Center for Research Resources. Many genetically manipulated strains of C. elegans are available at nominal cost from the CGC. Studies using the C. elegans model have explored insulin signaling, response to dietary glucose, the influence of serotonin on obesity, satiety, feeding and hypoxia-associated illnesses. C. elegans has also been used as a model to evaluate potential obesity therapeutics, explore the mechanisms behind single gene mutations related to obesity and to define the mechanistic details of fat metabolism. Obesity now affects a third of the US population and is becoming a progressively more expensive public health problem. Faster and less expensive methods to reach more effective treatments are clearly needed. We present this review hoping to stimulate interest in using the C. elegans model as a vehicle to advance the understanding and future treatment of obesity. PMID:21556043

  20. Somatic Embryogenesis in Olive (Olea europaea L. subsp. europaea var. sativa and var. sylvestris).

    PubMed

    Rugini, Eddo; Silvestri, Cristian

    2016-01-01

    Protocols for olive somatic embryogenesis from zygotic embryos and mature tissues have been described for both Olea europaea sub. europaea var. sativa and var. sylvestris. Immature zygotic embryos (no more than 75 days old), used after fruit collection or stored at 12-14 °C for 2-3 months, are the best responsive explants and very slightly genotype dependent, and one single protocol can be effective for a wide range of genotypes. On the contrary, protocols for mature zygotic embryos and for mature tissue of cultivars are often genotype specific, so that they may require many adjustments according to genotypes. The use of thidiazuron and cefotaxime seems to be an important trigger for induction phase particularly for tissues derived from cultivars. Up to now, however, the application of this technique for large-scale propagation is hampered also by the low rate of embryo germination; it proves nonetheless very useful for genetic improvement. PMID:26619870

  1. Microsporidia Are Natural Intracellular Parasites of the Nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Troemel, Emily R; Félix, Marie-Anne; Whiteman, Noah K; Barrière, Antoine; Ausubel, Frederick M

    2008-01-01

    For decades the soil nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has been an important model system for biology, but little is known about its natural ecology. Recently, C. elegans has become the focus of studies of innate immunity and several pathogens have been shown to cause lethal intestinal infections in C. elegans. However none of these pathogens has been shown to invade nematode intestinal cells, and no pathogen has been isolated from wild-caught C. elegans. Here we describe an intracellular pathogen isolated from wild-caught C. elegans that we show is a new species of microsporidia. Microsporidia comprise a large class of eukaryotic intracellular parasites that are medically and agriculturally important, but poorly understood. We show that microsporidian infection of the C. elegans intestine proceeds through distinct stages and is transmitted horizontally. Disruption of a conserved cytoskeletal structure in the intestine called the terminal web correlates with the release of microsporidian spores from infected cells, and appears to be part of a novel mechanism by which intracellular pathogens exit from infected cells. Unlike in bacterial intestinal infections, the p38 MAPK and insulin/insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling pathways do not appear to play substantial roles in resistance to microsporidian infection in C. elegans. We found microsporidia in multiple wild-caught isolates of Caenorhabditis nematodes from diverse geographic locations. These results indicate that microsporidia are common parasites of C. elegans in the wild. In addition, the interaction between C. elegans and its natural microsporidian parasites provides a system in which to dissect intracellular intestinal infection in vivo and insight into the diversity of pathogenic mechanisms used by intracellular microbes. PMID:19071962

  2. C. elegans: social interactions in a "nonsocial" animal.

    PubMed

    Ardiel, Evan L; Rankin, Catharine H

    2009-01-01

    As self-fertilizing nematodes, Caenorhabditis elegans do not normally come to mind when one thinks of social animals. However, their reproductive mode is optimized for rapid population growth, and although they do not form structured societies, conspecifics are an important source of sensory input. A pheromone signal underlies multiple complex behaviors, including diapause, male-mating, and aggregation. The use of C. elegans in sociogenetics research allows for the analysis of social interactions at the level of genes, circuits, and behaviors. This chapter describes natural polymorphisms in mab-23, plg-1, npr-1, and glb-5 as they relate to two C. elegans social behaviors: male-mating and aggregation. PMID:20109657

  3. Non-microfluidic methods for imaging live C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Luke, Cliff J.; Niehaus, Jason Z.; O’Reilly, Linda P.; Watkins, Simon C.

    2016-01-01

    There are many challenges to live C. elegans imaging including the high motility of the animals and sustaining their viability for extended periods of time. Commonly used anesthetics to immobilize the C. elegans for imaging purpose prevents feeding of the animals and can cause cellular physiologic changes. Here we present three adapted or novel methodologies to image live C. elegans over different imaging microscopy equipment to allow for visualization of animals by DIC and fluorescence without the use of microfluidic technologies. The methods present here use common microscopy consumables and equipment found in many imaging core facilities and can be easily adapted to fit on multiple microscopy systems. PMID:24836996

  4. 1D-VAR Retrieval Using Superchannels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Xu; Zhou, Daniel; Larar, Allen; Smith, William L.; Schluessel, Peter; Mango, Stephen; SaintGermain, Karen

    2008-01-01

    Since modern ultra-spectral remote sensors have thousands of channels, it is difficult to include all of them in a 1D-var retrieval system. We will describe a physical inversion algorithm, which includes all available channels for the atmospheric temperature, moisture, cloud, and surface parameter retrievals. Both the forward model and the inversion algorithm compress the channel radiances into super channels. These super channels are obtained by projecting the radiance spectra onto a set of pre-calculated eigenvectors. The forward model provides both super channel properties and jacobian in EOF space directly. For ultra-spectral sensors such as Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI) and the NPOESS Airborne Sounder Testbed Interferometer (NAST), a compression ratio of more than 80 can be achieved, leading to a significant reduction in computations involved in an inversion process. Results will be shown applying the algorithm to real IASI and NAST data.

  5. Cellular symmetry breaking during Caenorhabditis elegans development.

    PubMed

    Munro, Edwin; Bowerman, Bruce

    2009-10-01

    The nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans has produced a wellspring of insights into mechanisms that govern cellular symmetry breaking during animal development. Here we focus on two highly conserved systems that underlie many of the key symmetry-breaking events that occur during embryonic and larval development in the worm. One involves the interplay between Par proteins, Rho GTPases, and the actomyosin cytoskeleton and mediates asymmetric cell divisions that establish the germline. The other uses elements of the Wnt signaling pathway and a highly reiterative mechanism that distinguishes anterior from posterior daughter cell fates. Much of what we know about these systems comes from intensive study of a few key events-Par/Rho/actomyosin-mediated polarization of the zygote in response to a sperm-derived cue and the Wnt-mediated induction of endoderm at the four-cell stage. However, a growing body of work is revealing how C. elegans exploits elements/variants of these systems to accomplish a diversity of symmetry-breaking tasks throughout embryonic and larval development. PMID:20066102

  6. C. elegans Tracking and Behavioral Measurement

    PubMed Central

    Likitlersuang, Jirapat; Stephens, Greg; Palanski, Konstantine; Ryu, William S.

    2012-01-01

    We have developed instrumentation, image processing, and data analysis techniques to quantify the locomotory behavior of C. elegans as it crawls on the surface of an agar plate. For the study of the genetic, biochemical, and neuronal basis of behavior, C. elegans is an ideal organism because it is genetically tractable, amenable to microscopy, and shows a number of complex behaviors, including taxis, learning, and social interaction1,2. Behavioral analysis based on tracking the movements of worms as they crawl on agar plates have been particularly useful in the study of sensory behavior3, locomotion4, and general mutational phenotyping5. Our system works by moving the camera and illumination system as the worms crawls on a stationary agar plate, which ensures no mechanical stimulus is transmitted to the worm. Our tracking system is easy to use and includes a semi-automatic calibration feature. A challenge of all video tracking systems is that it generates an enormous amount of data that is intrinsically high dimensional. Our image processing and data analysis programs deal with this challenge by reducing the worms shape into a set of independent components, which comprehensively reconstruct the worms behavior as a function of only 3-4 dimensions6,7. As an example of the process we show that the worm enters and exits its reversal state in a phase specific manner. PMID:23183548

  7. The twisted pharynx phenotype in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Axäng, Claes; Rauthan, Manish; Hall, David H; Pilon, Marc

    2007-01-01

    Background The pharynx of C. elegans is an epithelial tube whose development has been compared to that of the embryonic heart and the kidney and hence serves as an interesting model for organ development. Several C. elegans mutants have been reported to exhibit a twisted pharynx phenotype but no careful studies have been made to directly address this phenomenon. In this study, the twisting mutants dig-1, mig-4, mnm-4 and unc-61 are examined in detail and the nature of the twist is investigated. Results We find that the twisting phenotype worsens throughout larval development, that in most mutants the pharynx retains its twist when dissected away from the worm body, and that double mutants between mnm-4 and mutants with thickened pharyngeal domains (pha-2 and sma-1) have less twisting in these regions. We also describe the ultrastructure of pharyngeal tendinous organs that connect the pharyngeal basal lamina to that of the body wall, and show that these are pulled into a spiral orientation by twisted pharynges. Within twisted pharynges, actin filaments also show twisting and are longer than in controls. In a mini screen of adhesionmolecule mutants, we also identified one more twisting pharynx mutant, sax-7. Conclusion Defects in pharyngeal cytoskeleton length or its anchor points to the extracellular matrix are proposed as the actual source of the twisting force. The twisted pharynx is a useful and easy-to-score phenotype for genes required in extracellular adhesion or organ attachment, and perhaps forgenes required for cytoskeleton regulation. PMID:17540043

  8. Alcohol Disinhibition of Behaviors in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Topper, Stephen M.; Aguilar, Sara C.; Topper, Viktoria Y.; Elbel, Erin; Pierce-Shimomura, Jonathan T.

    2014-01-01

    Alcohol has a wide variety of effects on physiology and behavior. One of the most well-recognized behavioral effects is disinhibition, where behaviors that are normally suppressed are displayed following intoxication. A large body of evidence has shown that alcohol-induced disinhibition in humans affects attention, verbal, sexual, and locomotor behaviors. Similar behavioral disinhibition is also seen in many animal models of ethanol response, from invertebrates to mammals and primates. Here we describe several examples of disinhibition in the nematode C. elegans. The nematode displays distinct behavioral states associated with locomotion (crawling on land and swimming in water) that are mediated by dopamine. On land, animals crawl and feed freely, but these behaviors are inhibited in water. We found that additional behaviors, including a variety of escape responses are also inhibited in water. Whereas alcohol non-specifically impaired locomotion, feeding, and escape responses in worms on land, alcohol specifically disinhibited these behaviors in worms immersed in water. Loss of dopamine signaling relieved disinhibition of feeding behavior, while loss of the D1-like dopamine receptor DOP-4 impaired the ethanol-induced disinhibition of crawling. The powerful genetics and simple nervous system of C. elegans may help uncover conserved molecular mechanisms that underlie alcohol-induced disinhibition of behaviors in higher animals. PMID:24681782

  9. Visualizing Neuroblast Cytokinesis During C. elegans Embryogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Wernike, Denise; van Oostende, Chloe; Piekny, Alisa

    2014-01-01

    This protocol describes the use of fluorescence microscopy to image dividing cells within developing Caenorhabditis elegans embryos. In particular, this protocol focuses on how to image dividing neuroblasts, which are found underneath the epidermal cells and may be important for epidermal morphogenesis. Tissue formation is crucial for metazoan development and relies on external cues from neighboring tissues. C. elegans is an excellent model organism to study tissue morphogenesis in vivo due to its transparency and simple organization, making its tissues easy to study via microscopy. Ventral enclosure is the process where the ventral surface of the embryo is covered by a single layer of epithelial cells. This event is thought to be facilitated by the underlying neuroblasts, which provide chemical guidance cues to mediate migration of the overlying epithelial cells. However, the neuroblasts are highly proliferative and also may act as a mechanical substrate for the ventral epidermal cells. Studies using this experimental protocol could uncover the importance of intercellular communication during tissue formation, and could be used to reveal the roles of genes involved in cell division within developing tissues. PMID:24686748

  10. PCH-2 regulates Caenorhabditis elegans lifespan

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Hong; Xu, Xiangru; Niklason, Laura E

    2015-01-01

    Components or downstream targets of many signaling pathways such as Insulin/IGF-1 and TOR, as well as genes involved in cellular metabolism and bioenergetics can extend worm lifespan 20% or more. The C. elegans gene pch-2 and its homologs, including TRIP13 in humans, have been studied for their functions in cell mitosis and meiosis, but have never been implicated in lifespan regulation. Here we show that over-expression of TRIP13 in human fibroblasts confers resistance to environmental stressors such as UV radiation and oxidative stress. Furthermore, pch-2 overexpression in C. elegans extends worm lifespan, and enhances worm survival in response to various stressors. Conversely, reducing pch-2 expression with RNAi shortens worm lifespan. Additional genetic epistasis analysis indicates that the molecular mechanism of pch-2 in worm longevity is tied to functions of the sirtuin family, implying that pch-2 is another chromatin regulator for worm longevity. These findings suggest a novel function of the pch-2 gene involved in lifespan determination. PMID:25635513

  11. Imaging embryonic development in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Mohler, William A; Isaacson, Ariel B

    2010-03-01

    Embryos are remarkable for their combination of pluripotency, three-dimensionality, and swiftness of subcellular and developmental rearrangements. Embryogenesis in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is uniquely suited among model systems to high-resolution dynamic imaging. Within a single high-magnification, high-numerical aperture (NA) microscope field, at submicrometer resolution, it is possible to observe several entire animals taking form. The full approximately 14-h course of embryonic cleavage and morphogenesis of this transparent, free-living worm is essentially invariant. Observing specific fluorescently labeled components during embryonic development promises to reveal the roles of organelles and molecules in an extremely diverse and reproducible set of contexts. The C. elegans community has created a growing collection of hundreds of transgenic strains expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP)-labeled versions of distinct endogenously expressed genes. The task of correlating the resulting expression and localization patterns in space and time is simultaneously alluring and technically demanding. This article describes the use of four-dimensional (4D) laser-scanning microscopy and subsequent data processing to record, portray, analyze, and compare the expression of fluorescently tagged gene products during development of the nematode embryo. PMID:20194475

  12. Mutations affecting nerve attachment of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Shioi, G; Shoji, M; Nakamura, M; Ishihara, T; Katsura, I; Fujisawa, H; Takagi, S

    2001-01-01

    Using a pan-neuronal GFP marker, a morphological screen was performed to detect Caenorhabditis elegans larval lethal mutants with severely disorganized major nerve cords. We recovered and characterized 21 mutants that displayed displacement or detachment of the ventral nerve cord from the body wall (Ven: ventral cord abnormal). Six mutations defined three novel genetic loci: ven-1, ven-2, and ven-3. Fifteen mutations proved to be alleles of previously identified muscle attachment/positioning genes, mup-4, mua-1, mua-5, and mua-6. All the mutants also displayed muscle attachment/positioning defects characteristic of mua/mup mutants. The pan-neuronal GFP marker also revealed that mutants of other mua/mup loci, such as mup-1, mup-2, and mua-2, exhibited the Ven defect. The hypodermis, the excretory canal, and the gonad were morphologically abnormal in some of the mutants. The pleiotropic nature of the defects indicates that ven and mua/mup genes are required generally for the maintenance of attachment of tissues to the body wall in C. elegans. PMID:11290717

  13. Alcohol disinhibition of behaviors in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Topper, Stephen M; Aguilar, Sara C; Topper, Viktoria Y; Elbel, Erin; Pierce-Shimomura, Jonathan T

    2014-01-01

    Alcohol has a wide variety of effects on physiology and behavior. One of the most well-recognized behavioral effects is disinhibition, where behaviors that are normally suppressed are displayed following intoxication. A large body of evidence has shown that alcohol-induced disinhibition in humans affects attention, verbal, sexual, and locomotor behaviors. Similar behavioral disinhibition is also seen in many animal models of ethanol response, from invertebrates to mammals and primates. Here we describe several examples of disinhibition in the nematode C. elegans. The nematode displays distinct behavioral states associated with locomotion (crawling on land and swimming in water) that are mediated by dopamine. On land, animals crawl and feed freely, but these behaviors are inhibited in water. We found that additional behaviors, including a variety of escape responses are also inhibited in water. Whereas alcohol non-specifically impaired locomotion, feeding, and escape responses in worms on land, alcohol specifically disinhibited these behaviors in worms immersed in water. Loss of dopamine signaling relieved disinhibition of feeding behavior, while loss of the D1-like dopamine receptor DOP-4 impaired the ethanol-induced disinhibition of crawling. The powerful genetics and simple nervous system of C. elegans may help uncover conserved molecular mechanisms that underlie alcohol-induced disinhibition of behaviors in higher animals. PMID:24681782

  14. Adherens junctions in C. elegans embryonic morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Armenti, Stephen T.; Nance, Jeremy

    2013-01-01

    C. elegans provides a simplified, in vivo model system in which to study adherens junctions and their role in morphogenesis. The core adherens junction components – HMR-1/E-cadherin, HMP-2/β-catenin and HMP-1/α-catenin – were initially identified through genetic screens for mutants with body axis elongation defects. In early embryos, adherens junction proteins are found at sites of contact between blastomeres, and in epithelial cells adherens junction proteins localize to the multifaceted apical junction (CeAJ) – a single structure that combines the adhesive and barrier functions of vertebrate adherens and tight junctions. The apically localized polarity proteins PAR-3 and PAR-6 mediate formation and maturation of junctions, while the basolaterally localized regulator LET-413/Scribble ensures that junctions remain apically positioned. Adherens junctions promote robust adhesion between epithelial cells and provide mechanical resistance for the physical strains of morphogenesis. However, in contrast to vertebrates, C. elegans adherens junction proteins are not essential for general cell adhesion or for epithelial cell polarization. A combination of conserved and novel proteins localizes to the CeAJ and works together with adherens junctions proteins to mediate adhesion. PMID:22674076

  15. Isolation of Trichophyton rubrum var. raubitschekii from a dog.

    PubMed

    Kano, Rui; Nagata, Masahiko; Suzuki, Takayuki; Watanabe, Shinichi; Kamata, Hiroshi; Hasegawa, Atsuhiko

    2010-06-01

    A rare anthropophilic dermatophyte, Trichophyton rubrum var. raubitschekii, was isolated for the first time from a case of animal dermatophytosis. We morphologically and physiologically identified the isolate from a case of canine dermatophytosis. Molecular typing of chitin synthase 1 (CHS1) and ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 sequences suggest that human and canine isolates of T. rubrum and T. rubrum var. raubitschekii are genetically identical. Therefore, T. rubrum, including T. rubrum var. raubitschekii, might be pathogenic to humans and dogs. PMID:19916902

  16. Caenorhabditis elegans: an emerging model in biomedical and environmental toxicology.

    PubMed

    Leung, Maxwell C K; Williams, Phillip L; Benedetto, Alexandre; Au, Catherine; Helmcke, Kirsten J; Aschner, Michael; Meyer, Joel N

    2008-11-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has emerged as an important animal model in various fields including neurobiology, developmental biology, and genetics. Characteristics of this animal model that have contributed to its success include its genetic manipulability, invariant and fully described developmental program, well-characterized genome, ease of maintenance, short and prolific life cycle, and small body size. These same features have led to an increasing use of C. elegans in toxicology, both for mechanistic studies and high-throughput screening approaches. We describe some of the research that has been carried out in the areas of neurotoxicology, genetic toxicology, and environmental toxicology, as well as high-throughput experiments with C. elegans including genome-wide screening for molecular targets of toxicity and rapid toxicity assessment for new chemicals. We argue for an increased role for C. elegans in complementing other model systems in toxicological research. PMID:18566021

  17. Bacterial attraction and quorum sensing inhibition in Caenorhabditis elegans exudates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Caenorhabditis elegans, a bacterivorous soil nematode, lives in a complex environment that requires chemical communication for mating, monitoring population density, recognition of food, avoidance of pathogenic microbes, and other essential ecological functions. Despite being one of the best-studied...

  18. Neural Regulatory Pathways of Feeding and Fat in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Lemieux, George A; Ashrafi, Kaveh

    2015-11-23

    The compact nervous system of Caenorhabditis elegans and its genetic tractability are features that make this organism highly suitable for investigating energy balance in an animal system. Here, we focus on molecular components and organizational principles emerging from the investigation of pathways that largely originate in the nervous system and regulate feeding behavior but also peripheral fat regulation through neuroendocrine signaling. We provide an overview of studies aimed at understanding how C. elegans integrate internal and external cues in feeding behavior. We highlight some of the similarities and differences in energy balance between C. elegans and mammals. We also provide our perspective on unresolved issues, both conceptual and technical, that we believe have hampered critical evaluation of findings relevant to fat regulation in C. elegans. PMID:26473379

  19. Microfluidics as a tool for C. elegans research.

    PubMed Central

    San-Miguel, Adriana; Lu, Hang

    2013-01-01

    Microfluidics has emerged as a set of powerful tools that have greatly advanced some areas of biological research, including research using C. elegans. The use of microfluidics has enabled many experiments that are otherwise impossible with conventional methods. Today there are many examples that demonstrate the main advantages of using microfluidics for C. elegans research, achieving precise environmental conditions and facilitating worm handling. Examples range from behavioral analysis under precise chemical or odor stimulation, locomotion studies in well-defined structural surroundings, and even long-term culture on chip. Moreover, microfluidics has enabled coupling worm handling and imaging thus facilitating genetic screens, optogenetic studies, and laser ablation experiments. In this article, we review some of the applications of microfluidics for C. elegans research and provide guides for the design, fabrication, and use of microfluidic devices for C. elegans research studies. PMID:24065448

  20. Caenorhabditis elegans: An Emerging Model in Biomedical and Environmental Toxicology

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Maxwell C. K.; Williams, Phillip L.; Benedetto, Alexandre; Au, Catherine; Helmcke, Kirsten J.; Aschner, Michael; Meyer, Joel N.

    2008-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has emerged as an important animal model in various fields including neurobiology, developmental biology, and genetics. Characteristics of this animal model that have contributed to its success include its genetic manipulability, invariant and fully described developmental program, well-characterized genome, ease of maintenance, short and prolific life cycle, and small body size. These same features have led to an increasing use of C. elegans in toxicology, both for mechanistic studies and high-throughput screening approaches. We describe some of the research that has been carried out in the areas of neurotoxicology, genetic toxicology, and environmental toxicology, as well as high-throughput experiments with C. elegans including genome-wide screening for molecular targets of toxicity and rapid toxicity assessment for new chemicals. We argue for an increased role for C. elegans in complementing other model systems in toxicological research. PMID:18566021

  1. Genomic response of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans to spaceflight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Selch, Florian; Higashibata, Akira; Imamizo-Sato, Mari; Higashitani, Atsushi; Ishioka, Noriaki; Szewczyk, Nathaniel J.; Conley, Catharine A.

    On Earth, it is common to employ laboratory animals such as the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans to help understand human health concerns. Similar studies in Earth orbit should help understand and address the concerns associated with spaceflight. The “International Caenorhabditis elegans Experiment FIRST” (ICE FIRST), was carried out onboard the Dutch Taxiflight in April of 2004 by an international collaboration of laboratories in France, Canada, Japan and the United States. With the exception of a slight movement defect upon return to Earth, the result of altered muscle development, no significant abnormalities were detected in spaceflown C. elegans. Work from Japan revealed apoptosis proceeds normally and work from Canada revealed no significant increase in the rate of mutation. These results suggest that C. elegans can be used to study non-lethal responses to spaceflight and can possibly be developed as a biological sensor. To further our understanding of C. elegans response to spaceflight, we examined the gene transcription response to the 10 days in space using a near full genome microarray analysis. The transcriptional response is consistent with the observed normal developmental timing, apoptosis, DNA repair, and altered muscle development. The genes identified as altered in response to spaceflight are enriched for genes known to be regulated, in C. elegans, in response to altered environmental conditions (Insulin and TGF-β regulated). These results demonstrate C. elegans can be used to study the effects of altered gravity and suggest that C. elegans responds to spaceflight by altering the expression of at least some of the same metabolic genes that are altered in response to differing terrestrial environments.

  2. Roles of chromatin factors in C. elegans development.

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Mingxue; Han, Min

    2007-01-01

    It is now well established that cells modify chromatin to establish transcriptionally active or inactive chromosomal regions. Such regulation of the chromatin structure is essential for the proper development of organisms. C. elegans is a powerful organism for exploring the developmental role of chromatin factors and their regulation. This chapter presents an overview of recent studies on chromatin factors in C. elegans with a description of their key roles in a variety of cellular and developmental processes. PMID:18050494

  3. Bacterial attraction and quorum sensing inhibition in Caenorhabditis elegans exudates.

    PubMed

    Kaplan, Fatma; Badri, Dayakar V; Zachariah, Cherian; Ajredini, Ramadan; Sandoval, Francisco J; Roje, Sanja; Levine, Lanfang H; Zhang, Fengli; Robinette, Steven L; Alborn, Hans T; Zhao, Wei; Stadler, Michael; Nimalendran, Rathika; Dossey, Aaron T; Brüschweiler, Rafael; Vivanco, Jorge M; Edison, Arthur S

    2009-08-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans, a bacterivorous nematode, lives in complex rotting fruit, soil, and compost environments, and chemical interactions are required for mating, monitoring population density, recognition of food, avoidance of pathogenic microbes, and other essential ecological functions. Despite being one of the best-studied model organisms in biology, relatively little is known about the signals that C. elegans uses to interact chemically with its environment or as defense. C. elegans exudates were analyzed by using several analytical methods and found to contain 36 common metabolites that include organic acids, amino acids, and sugars, all in relatively high abundance. Furthermore, the concentrations of amino acids in the exudates were dependent on developmental stage. The C. elegans exudates were tested for bacterial chemotaxis using Pseudomonas putida (KT2440), a plant growth promoting rhizobacterium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PAO1), a soil bacterium pathogenic to C. elegans, and Escherichia coli (OP50), a non-motile bacterium tested as a control. The C. elegans exudates attracted the two Pseudomonas species, but had no detectable antibacterial activity against P. aeruginosa. To our surprise, the exudates of young adult and adult life stages of C. elegans exudates inhibited quorum sensing in the reporter system based on the LuxR bacterial quorum sensing (QS) system, which regulates bacterial virulence and other factors in Vibrio fischeri. We were able to fractionate the QS inhibition and bacterial chemotaxis activities, thus demonstrating that these activities are chemically distinct. Our results demonstrate that C. elegans can attract its bacterial food and has the potential of partially regulating the virulence of bacterial pathogens by inhibiting specific QS systems. PMID:19649780

  4. BACTERIAL ATTRACTION AND QUORUM SENSING INHIBITION IN CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS EXUDATES

    PubMed Central

    KAPLAN, FATMA; BADRI, DAYAKAR V.; ZACHARIAH, CHERIAN; AJREDINI, RAMADAN; SANDOVAL, FRANCISCO J; ROJE, SANJA; LEVINE, LANFANG H.; ZHANG, FENGLI; ROBINETTE, STEVEN L.; ALBORN, HANS T.; ZHAO, WEI; STADLER, MICHAEL; NIMALENDRAN, RATHIKA; DOSSEY, AARON T.; BRÜSCHWEILER, RAFAEL; VIVANCO, JORGE M.; EDISON, ARTHUR S.

    2014-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans, a bacterivorous nematode, lives in complex rotting fruit, soil, and compost environments, and chemical interactions are required for mating, monitoring population density, recognition of food, avoidance of pathogenic microbes, and other essential ecological functions. Despite being one of the best-studied model organisms in biology, relatively little is known about the signals that C. elegans uses to chemically interact with its environment or as defense. C. elegans exudates were analyzed using several analytical methods and found to contain 36 common metabolites including organic acids, amino acids and sugars, all in relatively high abundance. Furthermore, the concentrations of amino acids in the exudates were dependent on developmental stage. The C. elegans exudates were tested for bacterial chemotaxis using Pseudomonas putida (KT2440), a plant growth promoting rhizobacterium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PAO1), a soil bacterium pathogenic to C. elegans, and E. coli (OP50), a non-motile bacterium tested as a control. The C. elegans exudates attracted the two Psuedomonas species, but had no detectable antibacterial activity against P. aeruginosa. To our surprise, the exudates of young adult and adult life stages of C. elegans exudates inhibited quorum sensing in the reporter system based on the LuxR bacterial quorum sensing (QS) system, which regulates bacterial virulence and other factors in Vibrio fischeri. We were able to fractionate the QS inhibition and bacterial chemotaxis activities, demonstrating that these activities are chemically distinct. Our results demonstrate that C. elegans can attract its bacterial food and has the potential of partially regulating the virulence of bacterial pathogens by inhibiting specific QS systems. PMID:19649780

  5. CHARACTERIZATION OF THE PARASPORAL INCLUSION OF BACILLUS THURINGIENSIS VAR. KYUSHUENSIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Bacillus thuringiensis var. kyushuensis synthesizes an irregularly shaped parasporal inclusion during sporulation. lectron microscopy revealed that the inclusions are composed of a relatively homogeneous appearing center surrounded by a thick, electron dense coating. urified incl...

  6. A Transparent window into biology: A primer on Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Corsi, Ann K; Wightman, Bruce; Chalfie, Martin

    2015-01-01

    A little over 50 years ago, Sydney Brenner had the foresight to develop the nematode (round worm) Caenorhabditis elegans as a genetic model for understanding questions of developmental biology and neurobiology. Over time, research on C. elegans has expanded to explore a wealth of diverse areas in modern biology including studies of the basic functions and interactions of eukaryotic cells, host-parasite interactions, and evolution. C. elegans has also become an important organism in which to study processes that go awry in human diseases. This primer introduces the organism and the many features that make it an outstanding experimental system, including its small size, rapid life cycle, transparency, and well-annotated genome. We survey the basic anatomical features, common technical approaches, and important discoveries in C. elegans research. Key to studying C. elegans has been the ability to address biological problems genetically, using both forward and reverse genetics, both at the level of the entire organism and at the level of the single, identified cell. These possibilities make C. elegans useful not only in research laboratories, but also in the classroom where it can be used to excite students who actually can see what is happening inside live cells and tissues. PMID:26087236

  7. Japanese studies on neural circuits and behavior of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sasakura, Hiroyuki; Tsukada, Yuki; Takagi, Shin; Mori, Ikue

    2013-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is an ideal organism for studying neural plasticity and animal behaviors. A total of 302 neurons of a C. elegans hermaphrodite have been classified into 118 neuronal groups. This simple neural circuit provides a solid basis for understanding the mechanisms of the brains of higher animals, including humans. Recent studies that employ modern imaging and manipulation techniques enable researchers to study the dynamic properties of nervous systems with great precision. Behavioral and molecular genetic analyses of this tiny animal have contributed greatly to the advancement of neural circuit research. Here, we will review the recent studies on the neural circuits of C. elegans that have been conducted in Japan. Several laboratories have established unique and clever methods to study the underlying neuronal substrates of behavioral regulation in C. elegans. The technological advances applied to studies of C. elegans have allowed new approaches for the studies of complex neural systems. Through reviewing the studies on the neuronal circuits of C. elegans in Japan, we will analyze and discuss the directions of neural circuit studies. PMID:24348340

  8. A Simple Light Stimulation of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kun He; Aschner, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Response via noxious stimulus can be an important indicator of sensory neuron function and overall health of an organism. If the stimulation is quick and simple, and the animal can be rescued afterwards, such a method not only allows for assays pertaining to changed sensory ability after various treatments, but also increases the reliability of the statistical relationships that are established. This protocol demonstrates a stimulation assay in Caenorhabditis elegans, using blue light from common laboratory equipment: the fluorescent microscope. The nematode detects blue light using a set of amphid ciliary sensory neurons, and blue light is detrimental to its overall health after a prolonged exposure. However, under brief exposure, blue light stimulation provides a rapid and easy method for quantifying sensory functions and health without harming the animal. © 2016 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. PMID:26828328

  9. Mainstreaming Caenorhabditis elegans in experimental evolution

    PubMed Central

    Gray, Jeremy C.; Cutter, Asher D.

    2014-01-01

    Experimental evolution provides a powerful manipulative tool for probing evolutionary process and mechanism. As this approach to hypothesis testing has taken purchase in biology, so too has the number of experimental systems that use it, each with its own unique strengths and weaknesses. The depth of biological knowledge about Caenorhabditis nematodes, combined with their laboratory tractability, positions them well for exploiting experimental evolution in animal systems to understand deep questions in evolution and ecology, as well as in molecular genetics and systems biology. To date, Caenorhabditis elegans and related species have proved themselves in experimental evolution studies of the process of mutation, host–pathogen coevolution, mating system evolution and life-history theory. Yet these organisms are not broadly recognized for their utility for evolution experiments and remain underexploited. Here, we outline this experimental evolution work undertaken so far in Caenorhabditis, detail simple methodological tricks that can be exploited and identify research areas that are ripe for future discovery. PMID:24430852

  10. Mainstreaming Caenorhabditis elegans in experimental evolution.

    PubMed

    Gray, Jeremy C; Cutter, Asher D

    2014-03-01

    Experimental evolution provides a powerful manipulative tool for probing evolutionary process and mechanism. As this approach to hypothesis testing has taken purchase in biology, so too has the number of experimental systems that use it, each with its own unique strengths and weaknesses. The depth of biological knowledge about Caenorhabditis nematodes, combined with their laboratory tractability, positions them well for exploiting experimental evolution in animal systems to understand deep questions in evolution and ecology, as well as in molecular genetics and systems biology. To date, Caenorhabditis elegans and related species have proved themselves in experimental evolution studies of the process of mutation, host-pathogen coevolution, mating system evolution and life-history theory. Yet these organisms are not broadly recognized for their utility for evolution experiments and remain underexploited. Here, we outline this experimental evolution work undertaken so far in Caenorhabditis, detail simple methodological tricks that can be exploited and identify research areas that are ripe for future discovery. PMID:24430852

  11. Big Data in Caenorhabditis elegans: quo vadis?

    PubMed Central

    Hutter, Harald; Moerman, Donald

    2015-01-01

    A clear definition of what constitutes “Big Data” is difficult to identify, but we find it most useful to define Big Data as a data collection that is complete. By this criterion, researchers on Caenorhabditis elegans have a long history of collecting Big Data, since the organism was selected with the idea of obtaining a complete biological description and understanding of development. The complete wiring diagram of the nervous system, the complete cell lineage, and the complete genome sequence provide a framework to phrase and test hypotheses. Given this history, it might be surprising that the number of “complete” data sets for this organism is actually rather small—not because of lack of effort, but because most types of biological experiments are not currently amenable to complete large-scale data collection. Many are also not inherently limited, so that it becomes difficult to even define completeness. At present, we only have partial data on mutated genes and their phenotypes, gene expression, and protein–protein interaction—important data for many biological questions. Big Data can point toward unexpected correlations, and these unexpected correlations can lead to novel investigations; however, Big Data cannot establish causation. As a result, there is much excitement about Big Data, but there is also a discussion on just what Big Data contributes to solving a biological problem. Because of its relative simplicity, C. elegans is an ideal test bed to explore this issue and at the same time determine what is necessary to build a multicellular organism from a single cell. PMID:26543198

  12. Big Data in Caenorhabditis elegans: quo vadis?

    PubMed

    Hutter, Harald; Moerman, Donald

    2015-11-01

    A clear definition of what constitutes "Big Data" is difficult to identify, but we find it most useful to define Big Data as a data collection that is complete. By this criterion, researchers on Caenorhabditis elegans have a long history of collecting Big Data, since the organism was selected with the idea of obtaining a complete biological description and understanding of development. The complete wiring diagram of the nervous system, the complete cell lineage, and the complete genome sequence provide a framework to phrase and test hypotheses. Given this history, it might be surprising that the number of "complete" data sets for this organism is actually rather small--not because of lack of effort, but because most types of biological experiments are not currently amenable to complete large-scale data collection. Many are also not inherently limited, so that it becomes difficult to even define completeness. At present, we only have partial data on mutated genes and their phenotypes, gene expression, and protein-protein interaction--important data for many biological questions. Big Data can point toward unexpected correlations, and these unexpected correlations can lead to novel investigations; however, Big Data cannot establish causation. As a result, there is much excitement about Big Data, but there is also a discussion on just what Big Data contributes to solving a biological problem. Because of its relative simplicity, C. elegans is an ideal test bed to explore this issue and at the same time determine what is necessary to build a multicellular organism from a single cell. PMID:26543198

  13. Perilla frutescens var. frutescens in northern Laos.

    PubMed

    Ito, Michiho; Honda, Gisho; Sydara, Kongmany

    2008-04-01

    Twenty-eight samples of mericarps of Perilla frutescens var. frutescens were collected through fieldwork performed in Phongsali and Xieng Khouang provinces in northern Laos. No perilla samples were collected from Savannakhet province in the south although more than 20 sites were investigated. Perilla plants are mostly grown mixed with dry-paddy rice by slash-and-burn cultivation in Laos. The most popular local name for perilla mericarps in the area was "Ma Nga Chan". Weight of 1,000 grains and hardness of the mericarps were measured, and all mericarps were found to be large (weight of 1,000 grains around 2 g) and soft (limit load weight under 300 g), which were preferred for culinary use in Laos. The composition of the essential oils obtained from the herbaceous plants raised from the mericarps was divided into five types, perillaketone, elemicine plus myristicine, shisofuran, piperitenon, and myristicine, and GC-MS analysis of these Laotian perilla samples showed that they were similar to those of corresponding types of known Japanese perilla strains. One of the shisofuran-type perilla contained large amounts of putative alpha-naginatene, which is likely to be an intermediate of the biosynthesis of naginataketone. The farmers' indifference to the oil type of the leaf seems to leave Laotian perilla as a good genetic resource for studies of the biosynthesis of oil compounds. PMID:18404336

  14. Effects of sterols on the development and aging of caenorhabditis elegans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Because Caenorhabditis elegans lacks several components of the de novo sterol biosynthesis pathway, it requires sterols as essential nutrients. Supplemented cholesterol undergoes extensive enzymatic modification in C. elegans to form other sterols of unknown function. Because sterol metabolism in ...

  15. Chemically Defined Medium and Caenorhabditis elegans: A Powerful Approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Szewczyk, N. J.; Kozak, E.; Conley, C. A.

    2003-01-01

    C. elegans has been established as a powerful genetic system. Growth in a chemically defined medium (C. elegans Maintenance Medium (CeMM)) now allows standardization and systematic manipulation of the nutrients that animals receive. Liquid cultivation allows automated culturing and experimentation and should be of me in large-scale growth and screening of animals. Here we present our initial results from developing culture systems with CeMM. We find that CeMM is versatile and culturing is simple. CeMM can be used in a solid or liquid state, it can be stored unused for at least a year, unattended actively growing cultures may be maintained longer than with standard techniques, and standard C. elegans protocols work well with animals grown in defined medium. We also find that there are caveats of using defined medium. Animals in defined medium grow more slowly than on standard medium, appear to display adaptation to the defined medium, and display altered growth rates as they change defined medium composition. As was suggested with the introduction of C. elegans as a potential genetic system, use of defined medium with C. elegans should prove a powerful tool.

  16. The dynamics of the thermal memory of C. elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryu, William; Palanski, Konstantine; Bartumeus, Frederic; Nemenman, Ilya

    2014-03-01

    C. elegans has the capacity to learn associatively. For example, C. elegans associates temperature with food and performs thermotaxis towards this temperature when placed on a spatial thermal gradient. However, very little is understood how C. elegans acquires this thermal memory. We have developed a novel droplet-based microfluidic assay to measure the dynamics of the thermal memory of C. elegans. Individual animals are placed in an array of microdroplets on a slide, and a linear temperature gradient of 0.5 deg/cm is applied to the array. By measuring the swimming motions of C. elegans in the droplets, we show that they can perform thermotaxis. By calculating an index of this taxis behavior over time, we quantify the worm's thermal memory and measure its dynamics when the animals are exposed to different conditions of feeding and starvation. Over a time scale of hours, we find that the thermal preference of wild-type worms decays and will actually become inverted and that mutations in the insulin signaling pathway perturb the dynamics. This biphasic conditional association can be explained with a reinforcement learning model with independent reinforcement and avoidance pathways with distinct time scales. Human Frontier Science Program.

  17. Using transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans in soil toxicity testing.

    PubMed

    Graves, Amber L; Boyd, Windy A; Williams, Phillip L

    2005-05-01

    Soil bioassays are important tools for evaluating toxicological effects within the terrestrial environment. The American Society for Testing and Materials E2172-01 Standard Guide outlines a method for conducting laboratory soil toxicity tests using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. This method is an efficient tool for extracting C. elegans from soil samples and can be carried out after a 24-h exposure period using relatively small amounts of soil. Drawbacks of this method include problems with (1) recovery of nematodes from soils containing a high percentage of organic matter, and (2) distinguishing indigenous nematode species from nematodes added for the laboratory test. Due in part to these issues, C. elegans has not been extensively accepted for use in soil testing. To address these concerns and improve upon the American Society for Testing and Materials method, this project focused on using transgenic strains of C. elegans carrying a GFP-expressing element. Lethality and behavior tests revealed that the transgenic nematodes respond similarly to the wild-type N2 strain, indicating that they can be used in the same manner in soil testing. The GFP marker is easily identifiable not only within soils containing a large amount of organic matter, but also in field-collected soils containing indigenous nematodes. These results support the use of transgenic GFP C. elegans in soil bioassays as a tool to further the reliability of laboratory toxicity tests. PMID:15886897

  18. kin-18, a C. elegans protein kinase involved in feeding

    PubMed Central

    Berman, Kevin S.; Hutchison, Michele; Avery, Leon; Cobb, Melanie H.

    2015-01-01

    TAO1 and TAO2 are recently described protein kinases whose initial characterization has placed them at the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) kinase kinase (MEKK) level of stress-responsive MAPK pathways. Because their physiological roles have not been identified, we sought to study their C. elegans homolog to learn more about their functions. kin-18 encodes a previously uncharacterized protein in C. elegans whose catalytic domain shares over 60% identity with TAO1 and TAO2. We demonstrate that KIN-18 is a protein of 120 kDa whose promoter is active in the pharynx and intestine of C. elegans. To learn more about TAO/KIN-18 function, we studied how expression of constitutively active forms of TAO1 or KIN-18 would affect the physiology of intact worms. Strains of C. elegans expressing active forms of TAO1 or KIN-18 exhibit altered pharyngeal electrophysiology as measured by electropharyngeogram. These worms grow more slowly and lay fewer eggs, phenotypes that could result from reduced feeding. We have also identified a C. elegans gene that encodes a protein kinase similar to mammalian MAPK/ERK Kinase (MEK) 4 whose promoter is active in the pharynx. It is phosphorylated by TAO1 in vitro and physically interacts with TAO1. PMID:11733138

  19. Chromosome Karyotypes of Echinacea angustifolia var. angustifolia and E. purpurea

    PubMed Central

    Qu, Luping; Wang, Xiping; Hood, Eatherley; Wang, Meihua; Scalzo, Richard

    2005-01-01

    Chromosome karyotypes of the most commonly cultivated and medicinally used Echinacea taxa, E. angustifolia DC. var. angustifolia and E. purpurea (L.) Moench., were analyzed. The chromosomes of both taxa are medium in length, ranging from 4.12 to 5.83 ?m in E. angustifolia var. angustifolia and 3.99 to 6.08 ?m in E. purpurea. No abrupt length changes in the chromosomes were noted. The karyotypes of the two species are generally similar, but a distinguishable feature exists in one pair of chromosomes. The centromere of chromosome pair 10 is subterminally located in E. purpurea, but terminally located in E. angustifolia var. angustifolia, which can be readily recognized in mitotic metaphase cell plates. This finding may provide useful information for Echinacea evolutionary, genetic, and breeding studies. PMID:16429596

  20. A Method for Evaluating Volt-VAR Optimization Field Demonstrations

    SciTech Connect

    Schneider, Kevin P.; Weaver, T. F.

    2014-08-31

    In a regulated business environment a utility must be able to validate that deployed technologies provide quantifiable benefits to the end-use customers. For traditional technologies there are well established procedures for determining what benefits will be derived from the deployment. But for many emerging technologies procedures for determining benefits are less clear and completely absent in some cases. Volt-VAR Optimization is a technology that is being deployed across the nation, but there are still numerous discussions about potential benefits and how they are achieved. This paper will present a method for the evaluation, and quantification of benefits, for field deployments of Volt-VAR Optimization technologies. In addition to the basic methodology, the paper will present a summary of results, and observations, from two separate Volt-VAR Optimization field evaluations using the proposed method.

  1. Caenorhabditis elegans vulval cell fate patterning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Félix, Marie-Anne

    2012-08-01

    The spatial patterning of three cell fates in a row of competent cells is exemplified by vulva development in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. The intercellular signaling network that underlies fate specification is well understood, yet quantitative aspects remain to be elucidated. Quantitative models of the network allow us to test the effect of parameter variation on the cell fate pattern output. Among the parameter sets that allow us to reach the wild-type pattern, two general developmental patterning mechanisms of the three fates can be found: sequential inductions and morphogen-based induction, the former being more robust to parameter variation. Experimentally, the vulval cell fate pattern is robust to stochastic and environmental challenges, and minor variants can be detected. The exception is the fate of the anterior cell, P3.p, which is sensitive to stochastic variation and spontaneous mutation, and is also evolving the fastest. Other vulval precursor cell fates can be affected by mutation, yet little natural variation can be found, suggesting stabilizing selection. Despite this fate pattern conservation, different Caenorhabditis species respond differently to perturbations of the system. In the quantitative models, different parameter sets can reconstitute their response to perturbation, suggesting that network variation among Caenorhabditis species may be quantitative. Network rewiring likely occurred at longer evolutionary scales.

  2. The Caenorhabditis elegans septin complex is nonpolar

    PubMed Central

    John, Corinne M; Hite, Richard K; Weirich, Christine S; Fitzgerald, Daniel J; Jawhari, Hatim; Faty, Mahamadou; Schläpfer, Dominik; Kroschewski, Ruth; Winkler, Fritz K; Walz, Tom; Barral, Yves; Steinmetz, Michel O

    2007-01-01

    Septins are conserved GTPases that form heteromultimeric complexes and assemble into filaments that play a critical role in cell division and polarity. Results from budding and fission yeast indicate that septin complexes form around a tetrameric core. However, the molecular structure of the core and its influence on the polarity of septin complexes and filaments is poorly defined. The septin complex of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is formed entirely by the core septins UNC-59 and UNC-61. We show that UNC-59 and UNC-61 form a dimer of coiled-coil-mediated heterodimers. By electron microscopy, this heterotetramer appears as a linear arrangement of four densities representing the four septin subunits. Fusion of GFP to the N termini of UNC-59 and UNC-61 and subsequent electron microscopic visualization suggests that the sequence of septin subunits is UNC-59/UNC-61/UNC-61/UNC-59. Visualization of GFP extensions fused to the extremity of the C-terminal coiled coils indicates that these extend laterally from the heterotetrameric core. Together, our study establishes that the septin core complex is symmetric, and suggests that septins form nonpolar filaments. PMID:17599066

  3. Chromosome I duplications in Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    McKim, K.S.; Rose, A.M. )

    1990-01-01

    We have isolated and characterized 76 duplications of chromosome I in the genome of Caenorhabditis elegans. The region studied is the 20 map unit left half of the chromosome. Sixty-two duplications were induced with gamma radiation and 14 arose spontaneously. The latter class was apparently the result of spontaneous breaks within the parental duplication. The majority of duplications behave as if they are free. Three duplications are attached to identifiable sequences from other chromosomes. The duplication breakpoints have been mapped by complementation analysis relative to genes on chromosome I. Nineteen duplication breakpoints and seven deficiency breakpoints divide the left half of the chromosome into 24 regions. We have studied the relationship between duplication size and segregational stability. While size is an important determinant of mitotic stability, it is not the only one. We observed clear exceptions to a size-stability correlation. In addition to size, duplication stability may be influenced by specific sequences or chromosome structure. The majority of the duplications were stable enough to be powerful tools for gene mapping. Therefore the duplications described here will be useful in the genetic characterization of chromosome I and the techniques we have developed can be adapted to other regions of the genome.

  4. Phenanthrene bioaccumulation in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Spann, Nicole; Goedkoop, Willem; Traunspurger, Walter

    2015-02-01

    The contribution of food to the bioaccumulation of xenobiotics and hence toxicity is still an ambiguous issue. It is becoming more and more evident that universal statements cannot be made, but that the relative contribution of food-associated xenobiotics in bioaccumulation depends on species, substance, and environmental conditions. Yet, small-sized benthic or soil animals such as nematodes have largely been disregarded so far. Bioaccumulation of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon phenanthrene in the absence and presence of bacterial food was measured in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Elimination of phenanthrene in the nematodes was biphasic, suggesting that there was a slowly exchanging pool within the nematodes or that biotransformation of phenanthrene took place. Even with food present, dissolved phenanthrene was still the major contributor to bioaccumulated compound in nematode tissues, whereas the diet only contributed about 9%. Toxicokinetic parameters in the treatment without food were different from the ones of the treatment with bacteria, possibly because nematodes depleted their lipid reserves during starvation. PMID:25607770

  5. Microbial pathogenesis and host defense in the nematode C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Lianne B; Troemel, Emily R

    2015-02-01

    Epithelial cells line the surfaces of the body, and are on the front lines of defense against microbial infection. Like many other metazoans, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans lacks known professional immune cells and relies heavily on defense mediated by epithelial cells. New results indicate that epithelial defense in C. elegans can be triggered through detection of pathogen-induced perturbation of core physiology within host cells and through autophagic defense against intracellular and extracellular pathogens. Recent studies have also illuminated a diverse array of pathogenic attack strategies used against C. elegans. These findings are providing insight into the underpinnings of host/pathogen interactions in a simple animal host that can inform studies of infectious diseases in humans. PMID:25461579

  6. Coordination of behavioral hierarchies during environmental transitions in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Vidal-Gadea, Andrés G.; Davis, Scott; Becker, Lindsay; Pierce-Shimomura, Jonathan T.

    2012-01-01

    For animals inhabiting multiple environments, the ability to select appropriate behaviors is crucial as their adaptability is often context dependent. Caenorhabditis elegans uses distinct gaits to move on land and in water. Gait transitions can potentially coordinate behaviors associated with distinct environments. We investigated whether land and water differentially affect the behavioral repertoire of C. elegans. Swimming worms interrupted foraging, feeding, egg-laying and defecation. Exogenous dopamine induced bouts of these land-associated behaviors in water. Our finding that worms do not drink fluid while immersed may explain why higher drug doses are required in water than on land to elicit the same effects. C. elegans is a valid model to study behavioral hierarchies and how environmental pressures alter their balance. PMID:23525841

  7. Metabotropic GABA signalling modulates longevity in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chun, Lei; Gong, Jianke; Yuan, Fengling; Zhang, Bi; Liu, Hongkang; Zheng, Tianlin; Yu, Teng; Xu, X. Z. Shawn; Liu, Jianfeng

    2015-01-01

    The nervous system plays an important but poorly understood role in modulating longevity. GABA, a prominent inhibitory neurotransmitter, is best known to regulate nervous system function and behaviour in diverse organisms. Whether GABA signalling affects aging, however, has not been explored. Here we examined mutants lacking each of the major neurotransmitters in C. elegans, and find that deficiency in GABA signalling extends lifespan. This pro-longevity effect is mediated by the metabotropic GABAB receptor GBB-1, but not ionotropic GABAA receptors. GBB-1 regulates lifespan through G protein-PLCβ signalling, which transmits longevity signals to the transcription factor DAF-16/FOXO, a key regulator of lifespan. Mammalian GABAB receptors can functionally substitute for GBB-1 in lifespan control in C. elegans. Our results uncover a new role of GABA signalling in lifespan regulation in C. elegans, raising the possibility that a similar process may occur in other organisms. PMID:26537867

  8. Evolution of development in nematodes related to C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Sommer, Ralf J

    2005-01-01

    The knowledge about C. elegans provides a paradigm for comparative studies. Nematodes are very attractive in evolutionary developmental biology given the species richness of the phylum and the easiness with which several of these species can be cultured under laboratory conditions. Embryonic, gonad, vulva and male tail development were studied and compared in nematodes of five different families, providing a detailed picture of evolutionary changes in development. In particular, vulva development has been studied in great detail and substantial differences in the cellular, genetic and molecular mechanisms have been observed between C. elegans and other nematodes. For example, vulva induction relies on the single anchor cell in C. elegans, whereas a variety of different cellular mechanisms are used in related species. In recent years, a few species have been developed as satellite systems for detailed genetic and molecular studies, such as Oscheius tipulae and Pristionchus pacificus. PMID:18050392

  9. Metabotropic GABA signalling modulates longevity in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Chun, Lei; Gong, Jianke; Yuan, Fengling; Zhang, Bi; Liu, Hongkang; Zheng, Tianlin; Yu, Teng; Xu, X Z Shawn; Liu, Jianfeng

    2015-01-01

    The nervous system plays an important but poorly understood role in modulating longevity. GABA, a prominent inhibitory neurotransmitter, is best known to regulate nervous system function and behaviour in diverse organisms. Whether GABA signalling affects aging, however, has not been explored. Here we examined mutants lacking each of the major neurotransmitters in C. elegans, and find that deficiency in GABA signalling extends lifespan. This pro-longevity effect is mediated by the metabotropic GABAB receptor GBB-1, but not ionotropic GABAA receptors. GBB-1 regulates lifespan through G protein-PLCβ signalling, which transmits longevity signals to the transcription factor DAF-16/FOXO, a key regulator of lifespan. Mammalian GABAB receptors can functionally substitute for GBB-1 in lifespan control in C. elegans. Our results uncover a new role of GABA signalling in lifespan regulation in C. elegans, raising the possibility that a similar process may occur in other organisms. PMID:26537867

  10. Insulin/insulin-like growth factor signaling in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Coleen T; Hu, Patrick J

    2013-01-01

    The C. elegans insulin/IGF-1 signaling (IIS) pathway connects nutrient levels to metabolism, growth, development, longevity, and behavior. This fundamental pathway is regulated by insulin-like peptide ligands that bind to the insulin/IGF-1 transmembrane receptor (IGFR) ortholog DAF-2. DAF-2/IGFR controls the activity of a conserved phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt kinase cascade, culminating in the regulation of a FoxO transcription factor, DAF-16, that governs most of the functions of this pathway. In light of the evolutionary conservation of the IIS pathway, its study in C. elegans is likely to shed light on its functions and regulation in higher organisms, including humans. Originally identified based on its role in the regulation of larval development and aging, IIS also controls a host of other biological processes. Here we review what is currently known about the biological functions and the molecular components of C. elegans IIS. PMID:24395814

  11. Mechanisms of innate immunity in C. elegans epidermis.

    PubMed

    Taffoni, Clara; Pujol, Nathalie

    2015-01-01

    The roundworm C. elegans has been successfully used for more than 50 y as a genetically tractable invertebrate model in diverse biological fields such as neurobiology, development and interactions. C. elegans feeds on bacteria and can be naturally infected by a wide range of microorganisms, including viruses, bacteria and fungi. Most of these pathogens infect C. elegans through its gut, but some have developed ways to infect the epidermis. In this review, we will mainly focus on epidermal innate immunity, in particular the signaling pathways and effectors activated upon wounding and fungal infection that serve to protect the host. We will discuss the parallels that exist between epidermal innate immune responses in nematodes and mammals. PMID:26716073

  12. Complete mitochondrial genome of Eumeces elegans (Squamata: Scincidae).

    PubMed

    Song, Tao; Zhang, Chenling; Huang, Xin; Zhang, Baowei

    2016-01-01

    Eumeces elegans is a kind of blue-tailed lizard in the genus Eumeces, and widely distributed in southern provinces of China. We sequenced and characterized the complete mitochondrial genome of Eumeces elegans. The total length of the complete mitochondrial genome was 17,304?bp with 13 protein-coding genes, 22 tRNAs, two rRNAs and a control regions. The overall base composition of Eumeces elegans was 31.0% A, 15.0% G, 29.8% C, and 24.2% T. ND6 subunit gene and eight tRNA genes were encoded on the L-stand, and other genes were distributed on the H-strand. PMID:24779594

  13. Microbial pathogenesis and host defense in the nematode C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Lianne B.; Troemel, Emily R.

    2014-01-01

    Epithelial cells line the surfaces of the body, and are on the front lines of defense against microbial infection. Like many other metazoans, the nematode C. elegans lacks known professional immune cells and relies heavily on defense mediated by epithelial cells. New results indicate that epithelial defense in C. elegans can be triggered through detection of pathogen-induced perturbation of core physiology within host cells and through autophagic defense against intracellular and extracellular pathogens. Recent studies have also illuminated a diverse array of pathogenic attack strategies used against C. elegans. These findings are providing insight into the underpinnings of host/pathogen interactions in a simple animal host that can inform studies of infectious diseases in humans. PMID:25461579

  14. The nematode C. elegans as a complex viscoelastic fluid.

    PubMed

    Backholm, Matilda; Ryu, William S; Dalnoki-Veress, Kari

    2015-05-01

    The viscoelastic material properties of the model organism C. elegans were probed with a micropipette deflection technique and modelled with the standard linear solid model. Dynamic relaxation measurements were performed on the millimetric nematode to investigate its viscous characteristics in detail. We show that the internal properties of C. elegans can not be fully described by a simple Newtonian fluid. Instead, a power-law fluid model was implemented and shown to be in excellent agreement with experimental results. The nematode exhibits shear thinning properties and its complex fluid characteristics were quantified. The bending-rate dependence of the internal damping coefficient of C. elegans could affect its gait modulation in different external environments. PMID:25957177

  15. Proprioceptive coupling within motor neurons drives C. elegans forward locomotion

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Quan; Po, Michelle; Hulme, Elizabeth; Chen, Sway; Liu, Xinyu; Kwok, Sen Wai; Gershow, Marc; Leifer, Andrew M; Butler, Victoria; Fang-Yen, Christopher; Kawano, Taizo; Schafer, William R; Whitesides, George

    2012-01-01

    Summary Locomotion requires coordinated motor activity throughout an animal’s body. In both vertebrates and invertebrates, chains of coupled Central Pattern Generators (CPGs) are commonly evoked to explain local rhythmic behaviors. In C. elegans, we report that proprioception within the motor circuit is responsible for propagating and coordinating rhythmic undulatory waves from head to tail during forward movement. Proprioceptive coupling between adjacent body regions transduces rhythmic movement initiated near the head into bending waves driven along the body by a chain of reflexes. Using optogenetics and calcium imaging to manipulate and monitor motor circuit activity of moving C. elegans held in microfluidic devices, we found that the B-type cholinergic motor neurons transduce the proprioceptive signal. In C. elegans, a sensorimotor feedback loop operating within a specific type of motor neuron both drives and organizes body movement. PMID:23177960

  16. Mechanisms of innate immunity in C. elegans epidermis

    PubMed Central

    Taffoni, Clara; Pujol, Nathalie

    2015-01-01

    The roundworm C. elegans has been successfully used for more than 50 y as a genetically tractable invertebrate model in diverse biological fields such as neurobiology, development and interactions. C. elegans feeds on bacteria and can be naturally infected by a wide range of microorganisms, including viruses, bacteria and fungi. Most of these pathogens infect C. elegans through its gut, but some have developed ways to infect the epidermis. In this review, we will mainly focus on epidermal innate immunity, in particular the signaling pathways and effectors activated upon wounding and fungal infection that serve to protect the host. We will discuss the parallels that exist between epidermal innate immune responses in nematodes and mammals. PMID:26716073

  17. Dissection of C. elegans behavioral genetics in 3-D environments

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Namseop; Hwang, Ara B.; You, Young-Jai; V. Lee, Seung-Jae; Ho Je, Jung

    2015-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a widely used model for genetic dissection of animal behaviors. Despite extensive technical advances in imaging methods, it remains challenging to visualize and quantify C. elegans behaviors in three-dimensional (3-D) natural environments. Here we developed an innovative 3-D imaging method that enables quantification of C. elegans behavior in 3-D environments. Furthermore, for the first time, we characterized 3-D-specific behavioral phenotypes of mutant worms that have defects in head movement or mechanosensation. This approach allowed us to reveal previously unknown functions of genes in behavioral regulation. We expect that our 3-D imaging method will facilitate new investigations into genetic basis of animal behaviors in natural 3-D environments. PMID:25955271

  18. Staphylococcal biofilm exopolysaccharide protects against Caenorhabditis elegans immune defenses.

    PubMed

    Begun, Jakob; Gaiani, Jessica M; Rohde, Holger; Mack, Dietrich; Calderwood, Stephen B; Ausubel, Frederick M; Sifri, Costi D

    2007-04-01

    Staphylococcus epidermidis and Staphylococcus aureus are leading causes of hospital-acquired infections that have become increasingly difficult to treat due to the prevalence of antibiotic resistance in these organisms. The ability of staphylococci to produce biofilm is an important virulence mechanism that allows bacteria both to adhere to living and artificial surfaces and to resist host immune factors and antibiotics. Here, we show that the icaADBC locus, which synthesizes the biofilm-associated polysaccharide intercellular adhesin (PIA) in staphylococci, is required for the formation of a lethal S. epidermidis infection in the intestine of the model nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Susceptibility to S. epidermidis infection is influenced by mutation of the C. elegans PMK-1 p38 mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase or DAF-2 insulin-signaling pathways. Loss of PIA production abrogates nematocidal activity and leads to reduced bacterial accumulation in the C. elegans intestine, while overexpression of the icaADBC locus in S. aureus augments virulence towards nematodes. PIA-producing S. epidermidis has a significant survival advantage over ica-deficient S. epidermidis within the intestinal tract of wild-type C. elegans, but not in immunocompromised nematodes harboring a loss-of-function mutation in the p38 MAP kinase pathway gene sek-1. Moreover, sek-1 and pmk-1 mutants are equally sensitive to wild-type and icaADBC-deficient S. epidermidis. These results suggest that biofilm exopolysaccharide enhances virulence by playing an immunoprotective role during colonization of the C. elegans intestine. These studies demonstrate that C. elegans can serve as a simple animal model for studying host-pathogen interactions involving staphylococcal biofilm exopolysaccharide and suggest that the protective activity of biofilm matrix represents an ancient conserved function for resisting predation. PMID:17447841

  19. Measuring Food Intake and Nutrient Absorption in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Gomez-Amaro, Rafael L.; Valentine, Elizabeth R.; Carretero, Maria; LeBoeuf, Sarah E.; Rangaraju, Sunitha; Broaddus, Caroline D.; Solis, Gregory M.; Williamson, James R.; Petrascheck, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans has emerged as a powerful model to study the genetics of feeding, food-related behaviors, and metabolism. Despite the many advantages of C. elegans as a model organism, direct measurement of its bacterial food intake remains challenging. Here, we describe two complementary methods that measure the food intake of C. elegans. The first method is a microtiter plate-based bacterial clearing assay that measures food intake by quantifying the change in the optical density of bacteria over time. The second method, termed pulse feeding, measures the absorption of food by tracking de novo protein synthesis using a novel metabolic pulse-labeling strategy. Using the bacterial clearance assay, we compare the bacterial food intake of various C. elegans strains and show that long-lived eat mutants eat substantially more than previous estimates. To demonstrate the applicability of the pulse-feeding assay, we compare the assimilation of food for two C. elegans strains in response to serotonin. We show that serotonin-increased feeding leads to increased protein synthesis in a SER-7-dependent manner, including proteins known to promote aging. Protein content in the food has recently emerged as critical factor in determining how food composition affects aging and health. The pulse-feeding assay, by measuring de novo protein synthesis, represents an ideal method to unequivocally establish how the composition of food dictates protein synthesis. In combination, these two assays provide new and powerful tools for C. elegans research to investigate feeding and how food intake affects the proteome and thus the physiology and health of an organism. PMID:25903497

  20. Proteomic Study and Marker Protein Identification of Caenorhabditis elegans Lipid Droplets*

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Peng; Na, Huimin; Liu, Zhenglong; Zhang, Shuyan; Xue, Peng; Chen, Yong; Pu, Jing; Peng, Gong; Huang, Xun; Yang, Fuquan; Xie, Zhensheng; Xu, Tao; Xu, Pingyong; Ou, Guangshuo; Zhang, Shaobing O.; Liu, Pingsheng

    2012-01-01

    Lipid droplets (LDs) are a neutral lipid storage organelle that is conserved across almost all species. Many metabolic syndromes are directly linked to the over-storage of neutral lipids in LDs. The study of LDs in Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) has been difficult because of the lack of specific LD marker proteins. Here we report the purification and proteomic analysis of C. elegans lipid droplets for the first time. We identified 306 proteins, 63% of these proteins were previously known to be LD-proteins, suggesting a similarity between mammalian and C. elegans LDs. Using morphological and biochemical analyses, we show that short-chain dehydrogenase, DHS-3 is almost exclusively localized on C. elegans LDs, indicating that it can be used as a LD marker protein in C. elegans. These results will facilitate further mechanistic studies of LDs in this powerful genetic system, C. elegans. PMID:22493183

  1. BZ UMa and Var Her 04: Orphan TOADS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Price, A.; Howell, S.

    2005-05-01

    Both BZ UMa and Var Her 04 are cataclysmic variable stars without a home. Neither fit easily into current classification systems so may extend the population distribution of two unique CV types: UGWZ dwarf novae and intermediate polars. New outburst photometry and archival X-Ray data shed some new light on BZ UMa's high energy state and new spectral and IR observations from Spitzer of dust around the newly discovered cataclysmic variable Var Her 04 may help find it a home as well.

  2. CRISPR-Based Methods for Caenorhabditis elegans Genome Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Dickinson, Daniel J.; Goldstein, Bob

    2016-01-01

    The advent of genome editing techniques based on the clustered regularly interspersed short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)–Cas9 system has revolutionized research in the biological sciences. CRISPR is quickly becoming an indispensible experimental tool for researchers using genetic model organisms, including the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Here, we provide an overview of CRISPR-based strategies for genome editing in C. elegans. We focus on practical considerations for successful genome editing, including a discussion of which strategies are best suited to producing different kinds of targeted genome modifications. PMID:26953268

  3. Interkingdom signaling between pathogenic bacteria and Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Mellies, Jay L.; Lawrence-Pine, Emily R.

    2010-01-01

    Investigators have recently turned to the soil nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a small animal infection model to study infectious disease. To extrapolate findings concerning bacterial pathogenesis from non-mammals to mammals, virulence factors should be conserved in function, independent of the infection model. Emerging from these studies is the observation that bacterial virulence regulatory networks function in a conserved manner across multiple hosts, including nematodes, mice, and plants. Several regulatory networks have been implicated in nematode innate immune function, and are being exploited in the C. elegans infection model to develop novel chemical therapies against bacterial pathogens. PMID:20667738

  4. Regulation of the X Chromosomes in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, William G.; Ercan, Sevinc; Lieb, Jason D.

    2014-01-01

    Dosage compensation, which regulates the expression of genes residing on the sex chromosomes, has provided valuable insights into chromatin-based mechanisms of gene regulation. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has adopted various strategies to down-regulate and even nearly silence the X chromosomes. This article discusses the different chromatin-based strategies used in somatic tissues and in the germline to modulate gene expression from the C. elegans X chromosomes and compares these strategies to those used by other organisms to cope with similar X-chromosome dosage differences. PMID:24591522

  5. Mechanism and regulation of translation in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Rhoads, Robert E; Dinkova, Tzvetanka D; Korneeva, Nadejda L

    2006-01-01

    C. elegans represents a favorable system to study the extraordinarily complicated process of eukaryotic protein synthesis, which involves over 100 RNAs and over 200 polypeptides just for the core machinery. Initial research in protein synthesis relied on fractionated mammalian and plant systems, but in the mid-1970s, the powerful genetics of Saccharomyces cerevisiae began to yield new insights for translation in all eukaryotes. C. elegans has many features of higher eukaryotes that are not shared by yeast. This allows protein synthesis researchers to combine biochemistry, cell biology, developmental biology, genetics, and genomics to study regulation of gene expression at the translational level. Most components of the core translational machinery have been identified in C. elegans, including rRNAs, 5S RNA, tRNAs, ribosomal proteins, and aminoacyl tRNA synthetases. C. elegans has amino acid sequence homologs for 56 of the known initiation, elongation, and release factor polypeptides, but few of these have been isolated, functionally identified, or studied at the biochemical level. Similarly, C. elegans has homologs for 22 components of the major signal transduction pathways implicated in control of protein synthesis. The translational efficiency of individual mRNAs relies on cis-regulatory elements that include either a 7-methylguanosine- or 2,2,7-trimethylguanosine-containing cap, the 5'-terminal spliced leader, sequence elements in the 3'-untranslated regions, and the 3'-terminal poly(A) tract. Several key developmental pathways in C. elegans are predominantly governed by translational mechanisms. Some evidence has been presented that well described regulatory mechanisms in other organisms, including covalent modification of translation factors, sequestration of translation factors, and mRNA-specific changes in poly(A) length, also occur in C. elegans. The most interesting unexplored questions may involve changes in the translation of individual mRNAs during development, in response to physiological changes, or after genetic manipulations. Given the highly developed state of C. elegans genomics, it can be expected that future application of computational tools, including data visualization, will help detect new instances of translational control. PMID:18050488

  6. Control of cell polarity and asymmetric division in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Sawa, Hitoshi

    2012-01-01

    During development of Caenorhabditis elegans, most somatic cells divide asymmetrically to produce daughter cells with distinct fates. A Wnt signaling pathway called Wnt/?-catenin asymmetry pathway controls both polarity of mother cells and distinct fates of daughter cells. Unlike the PCP pathway that regulates cell polarity in other organisms, this Wnt pathway in C. elegans requires ?-catenin. However, similar to the PCP pathway, signaling components including Dishevelled proteins are asymmetrically localized to the cell cortex. I will review current knowledge about the mechanism of this regulation and how the orientation of cell polarity is controlled by Wnt proteins. PMID:23140625

  7. An integrated theory of ageing in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    GEMS, DAVID

    2000-01-01

    Numerous theories of ageing have been proposed, and many have been tested experimentally, particularly using nematode models such as Caenorhabditis elegans. By combining those theories of ageing that remain plausible with recent findings from studies of C. elegans life span mutants, an integrated theory of ageing has been devised. This is formed from 3 interconnected elements: the evolutionary theory of ageing, the oxidative damage theory of ageing, and a nonadaptive programmed ageing theory. This tripartite theory of ageing gives rise to a number of predictions that may be tested experimentally. PMID:11197524

  8. Pharmacological classes that extend lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Carretero, Maria; Gomez-Amaro, Rafael L.; Petrascheck, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Recent progress in the field of aging has resulted in ever increasing numbers of compounds that extend lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans. Lifespan extending compounds include metabolites and synthetic compounds, as well as natural products. For many of these compounds, mammalian pharmacology is known, and for some the actual targets have been experimentally identified. In this review, we explore the data available in C. elegans to provide an overview of which pharmacological classes have potential for identification of further compounds that extend lifespan. PMID:25784926

  9. CRISPR-Based Methods for Caenorhabditis elegans Genome Engineering.

    PubMed

    Dickinson, Daniel J; Goldstein, Bob

    2016-03-01

    The advent of genome editing techniques based on the clustered regularly interspersed short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cas9 system has revolutionized research in the biological sciences. CRISPR is quickly becoming an indispensible experimental tool for researchers using genetic model organisms, including the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Here, we provide an overview of CRISPR-based strategies for genome editing in C. elegans. We focus on practical considerations for successful genome editing, including a discussion of which strategies are best suited to producing different kinds of targeted genome modifications. PMID:26953268

  10. Sperm and Oocyte Communication Mechanisms Controlling C. elegans Fertility

    PubMed Central

    Han, Sung Min; Cottee, Pauline A.; Miller, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    During sexual reproduction in many species, sperm and oocyte secrete diffusible signaling molecules to help orchestrate the biological symphony of fertilization. In the Caenorhabditis elegans gonad, bidirectional signaling between sperm and oocyte is important for guiding sperm to the fertilization site and inducing oocyte maturation. The molecular mechanisms that regulate sperm guidance and oocyte maturation are being delineated. Unexpectedly, these mechanisms are providing insight into human diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, spinal muscular atrophy, and cancer. Here we review sperm and oocyte communication in C. elegans and discuss relationships to human disorders. PMID:20034089

  11. Caenorhabditis elegans glp-4 Encodes a Valyl Aminoacyl tRNA Synthetase.

    PubMed

    Rastogi, Suchita; Borgo, Ben; Pazdernik, Nanette; Fox, Paul; Mardis, Elaine R; Kohara, Yuji; Havranek, Jim; Schedl, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Germline stem cell proliferation is necessary to populate the germline with sufficient numbers of cells for gametogenesis and for signaling the soma to control organismal properties such as aging. The Caenorhabditis elegans gene glp-4 was identified by the temperature-sensitive allele bn2 where mutants raised at the restrictive temperature produce adults that are essentially germ cell deficient, containing only a small number of stem cells arrested in the mitotic cycle but otherwise have a morphologically normal soma. We determined that glp-4 encodes a valyl aminoacyl transfer RNA synthetase (VARS-2) and that the probable null phenotype is early larval lethality. Phenotypic analysis indicates glp-4(bn2ts) is partial loss of function in the soma. Structural modeling suggests that bn2 Gly296Asp results in partial loss of function by a novel mechanism: aspartate 296 in the editing pocket induces inappropriate deacylation of correctly charged Val-tRNA(val). Intragenic suppressor mutations are predicted to displace aspartate 296 so that it is less able to catalyze inappropriate deacylation. Thus glp-4(bn2ts) likely causes reduced protein translation due to decreased levels of Val-tRNA(val). The germline, as a reproductive preservation mechanism during unfavorable conditions, signals the soma for organismal aging, stress and pathogen resistance. glp-4(bn2ts) mutants are widely used to generate germline deficient mutants for organismal studies, under the assumption that the soma is unaffected. As reduced translation has also been demonstrated to alter organismal properties, it is unclear whether changes in aging, stress resistance, etc. observed in glp-4(bn2ts) mutants are the result of germline deficiency or reduced translation. PMID:26464357

  12. Caenorhabditis elegans glp-4 Encodes a Valyl Aminoacyl tRNA Synthetase

    PubMed Central

    Rastogi, Suchita; Borgo, Ben; Pazdernik, Nanette; Fox, Paul; Mardis, Elaine R.; Kohara, Yuji; Havranek, Jim; Schedl, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Germline stem cell proliferation is necessary to populate the germline with sufficient numbers of cells for gametogenesis and for signaling the soma to control organismal properties such as aging. The Caenorhabditis elegans gene glp-4 was identified by the temperature-sensitive allele bn2 where mutants raised at the restrictive temperature produce adults that are essentially germ cell deficient, containing only a small number of stem cells arrested in the mitotic cycle but otherwise have a morphologically normal soma. We determined that glp-4 encodes a valyl aminoacyl transfer RNA synthetase (VARS-2) and that the probable null phenotype is early larval lethality. Phenotypic analysis indicates glp-4(bn2ts) is partial loss of function in the soma. Structural modeling suggests that bn2 Gly296Asp results in partial loss of function by a novel mechanism: aspartate 296 in the editing pocket induces inappropriate deacylation of correctly charged Val-tRNAval. Intragenic suppressor mutations are predicted to displace aspartate 296 so that it is less able to catalyze inappropriate deacylation. Thus glp-4(bn2ts) likely causes reduced protein translation due to decreased levels of Val-tRNAval. The germline, as a reproductive preservation mechanism during unfavorable conditions, signals the soma for organismal aging, stress and pathogen resistance. glp-4(bn2ts) mutants are widely used to generate germline deficient mutants for organismal studies, under the assumption that the soma is unaffected. As reduced translation has also been demonstrated to alter organismal properties, it is unclear whether changes in aging, stress resistance, etc. observed in glp-4(bn2ts) mutants are the result of germline deficiency or reduced translation. PMID:26464357

  13. The temporal scaling of Caenorhabditis elegans ageing.

    PubMed

    Stroustrup, Nicholas; Anthony, Winston E; Nash, Zachary M; Gowda, Vivek; Gomez, Adam; López-Moyado, Isaac F; Apfeld, Javier; Fontana, Walter

    2016-02-01

    The process of ageing makes death increasingly likely, involving a random aspect that produces a wide distribution of lifespan even in homogeneous populations. The study of this stochastic behaviour may link molecular mechanisms to the ageing process that determines lifespan. Here, by collecting high-precision mortality statistics from large populations, we observe that interventions as diverse as changes in diet, temperature, exposure to oxidative stress, and disruption of genes including the heat shock factor hsf-1, the hypoxia-inducible factor hif-1, and the insulin/IGF-1 pathway components daf-2, age-1, and daf-16 all alter lifespan distributions by an apparent stretching or shrinking of time. To produce such temporal scaling, each intervention must alter to the same extent throughout adult life all physiological determinants of the risk of death. Organismic ageing in Caenorhabditis elegans therefore appears to involve aspects of physiology that respond in concert to a diverse set of interventions. In this way, temporal scaling identifies a novel state variable, r(t), that governs the risk of death and whose average decay dynamics involves a single effective rate constant of ageing, kr. Interventions that produce temporal scaling influence lifespan exclusively by altering kr. Such interventions, when applied transiently even in early adulthood, temporarily alter kr with an attendant transient increase or decrease in the rate of change in r and a permanent effect on remaining lifespan. The existence of an organismal ageing dynamics that is invariant across genetic and environmental contexts provides the basis for a new, quantitative framework for evaluating the manner and extent to which specific molecular processes contribute to the aspect of ageing that determines lifespan. PMID:26814965

  14. The neuronal genome of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Hobert, Oliver

    2013-01-01

    The ~100 MB genome of C. elegans codes for ~20,000 protein-coding genes many of which are required for the function of the nervous system, composed of 302 neurons in the adult hermaphrodite and of 383 neurons in the adult male. In addition to housekeeping genes, a differentiated neuron is thought to express many hundreds if not thousands of genes that define its functional properties. These genes code for ion channels, G-protein-coupled receptors, neurotransmitter-synthesizing enzymes, transporters and receptors, neuropeptides and their receptors, cell adhesion molecules, motor proteins, signaling molecules and many others. Collectively such genes have been referred to as "terminal differentiation genes" or "effector genes". The differential expression of distinct combinations of terminal differentiation genes define different neuron types. This paper provides a compendium of more than 2,800 putative terminal differentiation genes. One pervasive theme revealed by the analysis of many gene families is the nematode-specific expansions of many neuron function-related gene families, including, for example, many types of ion channel families, sensory receptors and neurotransmitter receptors. The gene lists provided here can serve multiple purposes. They can serve as quick reference guides for individual gene families or they can be used to mine large datasets (e.g., expression datasets) for genes with likely functions in the nervous system. They also serve as a starting point for future projects. For example, a comprehensive understanding of the regulation of the often complex expression patterns of these genes in the nervous system will eventually explain how nervous systems are built. PMID:24081909

  15. The temporal scaling of Caenorhabditis elegans ageing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stroustrup, Nicholas; Anthony, Winston E.; Nash, Zachary M.; Gowda, Vivek; Gomez, Adam; López-Moyado, Isaac F.; Apfeld, Javier; Fontana, Walter

    2016-02-01

    The process of ageing makes death increasingly likely, involving a random aspect that produces a wide distribution of lifespan even in homogeneous populations. The study of this stochastic behaviour may link molecular mechanisms to the ageing process that determines lifespan. Here, by collecting high-precision mortality statistics from large populations, we observe that interventions as diverse as changes in diet, temperature, exposure to oxidative stress, and disruption of genes including the heat shock factor hsf-1, the hypoxia-inducible factor hif-1, and the insulin/IGF-1 pathway components daf-2, age-1, and daf-16 all alter lifespan distributions by an apparent stretching or shrinking of time. To produce such temporal scaling, each intervention must alter to the same extent throughout adult life all physiological determinants of the risk of death. Organismic ageing in Caenorhabditis elegans therefore appears to involve aspects of physiology that respond in concert to a diverse set of interventions. In this way, temporal scaling identifies a novel state variable, r(t), that governs the risk of death and whose average decay dynamics involves a single effective rate constant of ageing, kr. Interventions that produce temporal scaling influence lifespan exclusively by altering kr. Such interventions, when applied transiently even in early adulthood, temporarily alter kr with an attendant transient increase or decrease in the rate of change in r and a permanent effect on remaining lifespan. The existence of an organismal ageing dynamics that is invariant across genetic and environmental contexts provides the basis for a new, quantitative framework for evaluating the manner and extent to which specific molecular processes contribute to the aspect of ageing that determines lifespan.

  16. Indolizidine, Antiinfective and Antiparasitic Compounds from Prosopis glandulosa var. glandulosa

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Prosopilosidine, a new potent antiinfective and antiparasitic 2,3-dihydro-1H-indolizinium chloride, (1), was isolated from Prosopis glandulosa Torr. var. glandulosa. Furthermore, three additional new and one known indolizidines, prosopilosine (2), isoprosopilosine (3), isoprosopilosidine (4) and jul...

  17. Prenylated benzophenone derivatives from Clusia havetiodes var. stenocarpa.

    PubMed

    Christian, O E; Henry, G E; Jacobs, H; McLean, S; Reynolds, W F

    2001-01-01

    Extracts of the fruit of Clusia havetiodes var. stenocarpa have yielded three new prenylated benzophenone derivatives, 28,29-epoxyplukenetione A (1), 33-hydroperoxyisoplukenetione C (2), and 15,16-dihydro-16-hydroperoxyplukenetione F (3), as well as four which have been previously described, plukenetiones C, F, and G and sampsonione G. PMID:11170660

  18. Silicon-inducible defenses of Zinnia elegans against Myzus persicae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Several examples exist of silicon (Si) amendment inducing plant chemical defenses against plant pathogens, but few studies have focused on Si-induced defenses against phloem-feeding herbivores. The current study examined Si treatment of Zinnia elegans Jacq. cv. Oklahoma White (Compositae) on the pe...

  19. Caenorhabditis elegans glia modulate neuronal activity and behavior

    PubMed Central

    Stout Jr., Randy F.; Verkhratsky, Alexei; Parpura, Vladimir

    2014-01-01

    Glial cells of Caenorhabditis elegans can modulate neuronal activity and behavior, which is the focus of this review. Initially, we provide an overview of neuroglial evolution, making a comparison between C. elegans glia and their genealogical counterparts. What follows is a brief discussion on C. elegans glia characteristics in terms of their exact numbers, germ layers origin, their necessity for proper development of sensory organs, and lack of their need for neuronal survival. The more specific roles that various glial cells have on neuron-based activity/behavior are succinctly presented. The cephalic sheath glia are important for development, maintenance and activity of central synapses, whereas the amphid glia seem to set the tone of sensory synapses; these glial cell types are ectoderm-derived. Mesoderm-derived Glial-Like cells in the nerve Ring (GLRs) appear to be a part of the circuit for production of motor movement of the worm anterior. Finally, we discuss tools and approaches utilized in studying C. elegans glia, which are assets available for this animal, making it an appealing model, not only in neurosciences, but in biology in general. PMID:24672428

  20. Histidine Protects Against Zinc and Nickel Toxicity in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, John T.; Bruinsma, Janelle J.; Schneider, Daniel L.; Collier, Sara; Guthrie, James; Chinwalla, Asif; Robertson, J. David; Mardis, Elaine R.; Kornfeld, Kerry

    2011-01-01

    Zinc is an essential trace element involved in a wide range of biological processes and human diseases. Zinc excess is deleterious, and animals require mechanisms to protect against zinc toxicity. To identify genes that modulate zinc tolerance, we performed a forward genetic screen for Caenorhabditis elegans mutants that were resistant to zinc toxicity. Here we demonstrate that mutations of the C. elegans histidine ammonia lyase (haly-1) gene promote zinc tolerance. C. elegans haly-1 encodes a protein that is homologous to vertebrate HAL, an enzyme that converts histidine to urocanic acid. haly-1 mutant animals displayed elevated levels of histidine, indicating that C. elegans HALY-1 protein is an enzyme involved in histidine catabolism. These results suggest the model that elevated histidine chelates zinc and thereby reduces zinc toxicity. Supporting this hypothesis, we demonstrated that dietary histidine promotes zinc tolerance. Nickel is another metal that binds histidine with high affinity. We demonstrated that haly-1 mutant animals are resistant to nickel toxicity and dietary histidine promotes nickel tolerance in wild-type animals. These studies identify a novel role for haly-1 and histidine in zinc metabolism and may be relevant for other animals. PMID:21455490

  1. Blueberry polyphenols increase lifespan and thermotolerance in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Mark A; Shukitt-Hale, Barbara; Kalt, Wilhelmina; Ingram, Donald K; Joseph, James A; Wolkow, Catherine A

    2006-01-01

    Summary The beneficial effects of polyphenol compounds in fruits and vegetables are mainly extrapolated from in vitro studies or short-term dietary supplementation studies. Due to cost and duration, relatively little is known about whether dietary polyphenols are beneficial in whole animals, particularly with respect to aging. To address this question, we examined the effects of blueberry polyphenols on lifespan and aging of the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, a useful organism for such a study. We report that a complex mixture of blue-berry polyphenols increased lifespan and slowed aging-related declines in C. elegans. We also found that these benefits did not just reflect antioxidant activity in these compounds. For instance, blueberry treatment increased survival during acute heat stress, but was not protective against acute oxidative stress. The blueberry extract consists of three major fractions that all contain antioxidant activity. However, only one fraction, enriched in proanthocyanidin compounds, increased C. elegans lifespan and thermotolerance. To further determine how polyphenols prolonged C. elegans lifespan, we analyzed the genetic requirements for these effects. Prolonged lifespan from this treatment required the presence of a CaMKII pathway that mediates osmotic stress resistance, though not other pathways that affect stress resistance and longevity. In conclusion, polyphenolic compounds in blueberries had robust and reproducible benefits during aging that were separable from antioxidant effects. PMID:16441844

  2. Homologs of the Hh signalling network in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Bürglin, Thomas R; Kuwabara, Patricia E

    2006-01-01

    In Drosophila and vertebrates, Hedgehog (Hh) signalling is mediated by a cascade of genes, which play essential roles in cell proliferation and survival, and in patterning of the embryo, limb buds and organs. In C. elegans, this pathway has undergone considerable evolutionary divergence; genes encoding homologues of key pathway members, including Hh, Smoothened, Cos2, Fused and Suppressor of Fused, are absent. Surprisingly, over sixty proteins (i.e. WRT, GRD, GRL, and QUA), encoded by a set of genes collectively referred to as the Hh-related genes, and two co-orthologs (PTC-1,-3) of fly Patched, a Hh receptor, are present in C. elegans. Several of the Hh-related proteins are bipartite and all can potentially generate peptides with signalling activity, although none of these peptides shares obvious sequence similarity with Hh. In addition, the ptc-related (ptr) genes, which are present in a single copy in Drosophila and vertebrates and encode proteins closely related to Patched, have undergone an expansion in number in nematodes. A number of functions, including roles in molting, have been attributed to the C. elegans Hh-related, PTC and PTR proteins; most of these functions involve processes that are associated with the trafficking of proteins, sterols or sterol-modified proteins. Genes encoding other components of the Hh signalling pathway are also found in C. elegans, but their functions remain to be elucidated. PMID:18050469

  3. METABOLISM OF AN INSECT NEUROPEPTIDE BY THE NEMATODE C. ELEGANS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We are interested in neuropeptides in nematodes as leads to new control agents for parasitic nematodes. This includes physiological aspects of neuropeptide action and metabolic regulation of these peptides. The free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, with its mapped genome, offers unique opport...

  4. Biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan from C. elegans cohort

    SciTech Connect

    Suda, Hitoshi

    2014-09-12

    Highlights: • We focus on a third factor, noise, as well as on genetic and environmental factors. • C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. • An amplification of ATP noise was clearly evident from around the onset of biodemographic aging. • The extension of timing of noise amplification may contribute to effectively extending the healthspan. • The same mechanism of the mean lifespan extension in C. elegans may be realized in humans. - Abstract: Lifespan among individuals ranges widely in organisms from yeast to mammals, even in an isogenic cohort born in a nearly uniform environment. Needless to say, genetic and environmental factors are essential for aging and lifespan, but in addition, a third factor or the existence of a stochastic element must be reflected in aging and lifespan. An essential point is that lifespan or aging is an unpredictable phenomenon. The present study focuses on elucidating the biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan that latently indwells a stochastic nature. To perform this purpose, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans served as a model animal. C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. Then, utilizing this phenomenon, we clarified a mechanism of healthspan extension by measuring the single-worm ATP and estimating the ATP noise (or the variability of the ATP content) among individual worms and by quantitatively analyzing biodemographic data with the lifespan equation that was derived from a fluctuation theory.

  5. An Elegant Mind: Learning and Memory in "Caenorhabditis elegans"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ardiel, Evan L.; Rankin, Catharine H.

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews the literature on learning and memory in the soil-dwelling nematode "Caenorhabditis elegans." Paradigms include nonassociative learning, associative learning, and imprinting, as worms have been shown to habituate to mechanical and chemical stimuli, as well as learn the smells, tastes, temperatures, and oxygen levels that…

  6. Microbial transformation of 6-nitrobenzo(a)pyrene. [Cunninghamella elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Millner, G.C.; Fu, P.P.; Cerniglia, C.E.

    1986-01-01

    The fungal metabolism of the potent mutagenic and carcinogenic nitropolycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (nitro-PAH) 6-nitrobenzo(a)pyrene (6-NO/sub 2/-BaP) was investigated. Cunninghamella elegans was incubated with 6-NO/sub 2/-BaP for periods ranging between 1 and 7 d, and the metabolites formed were separated by high-performance liquid chromatography and identified by their UV-visible absorption, mass, and /sup 1/H nuclear magnetic resonance spectra. The results of the study indicate that C. elegans metabolized 6-NO/sub 2/-BaP to glucoside and sulfate conjugates of 1- and 3-hydroxy 6-NO/sub 2/-BaP and suggests that glycosylation and sulfation reactions may represent detoxification pathways in the fungal metabolism of nitro-PAHs. Experiments using (G-/sup 3/H)-6-NO/sub 2/-BaP indicated that C. elegans metabolized 62% of 6-NO/sub 2/-BaP with 168 h. The data also indicated that the nitro group at the C-6 position of benzo(a)pyrene blocked metabolism at the regions peri to the nitro substituent (C-7, C-8 positions) and enhanced metabolism at the C-1 and C-3 positions. The ability of the fungus C. elegans to metabolize 6-NO/sub 2/-BaP to biologically inactive compounds may have practical applications in the detoxification of nitro-PAH-contaminated wastes.

  7. FROM GENES TO FUNCTION : THE C. ELEGANS GENETIC TOOLBOX

    PubMed Central

    BOULIN, Thomas; HOBERT, Oliver

    2013-01-01

    This review aims to provide an overview of the technologies which make the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans an attractive genetic model system. We describe transgenesis techniques and forward and reverse genetic approaches to isolate mutants and clone genes. In addition, we discuss the new possibilities offered by genome engineering strategies and next generation genome analysis tools. PMID:23801671

  8. Concentration dependent differential activity of signalling molecules in Caenorhabditis elegans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Caenorhabditis elegans employs specific glycosides of the dideoxysugar ascarylose (the ‘ascarosides’) for monitoring population density/ dauer formation and finding mates. A synergistic blend of three ascarosides, called ascr#2, ascr#3 and ascr#4 acts as a dauer pheromone at a high concentration na...

  9. The emergence of stereotyped behaviors in C. elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Greg; Ryu, William; Bialek, William

    2010-03-01

    Many organisms, including humans, engage in stereotyped behaviors and these are often attributed to a deterministic command process within the nervous system. Here we use the locomotor dynamics of the nematode C. elegans to suggest an alternative explanation in which stereotyped behavior emerges due to noise within a non-linear dynamical system. In previous work (PLoS Comp Bio 4, e1000028 (2008)) we found that the body shapes of freely-crawling C. elegans are well-captured by four `eigenworms', two of which encode the phase of a locomotory wave that generates forward and backward motion. We also used this representation to infer a non-linear dynamical model for the phase in which forward and backward crawling emerge as attractors of the deterministic dynamics. Here we show that noise induces reversals between forward and backward crawling and that the predicted reversal rate is in good agreement with experiment, with no adjustable parameters. In this model, reversals follow a stereotyped trajectory for the same reason that Brownian escape over a barrier is dominated by a narrowly defined class of trajectories. Stereotypy becomes even clearer in the dynamics with lower noise levels; the real C. elegans is just outside the regime where the reversal rate follows an Arrhenius dependence on the noise level. We discus the implications of our results for C. elegans and other organisms.

  10. A Method for Culturing Embryonic C. elegans Cells

    PubMed Central

    Sangaletti, Rachele; Bianchi, Laura

    2013-01-01

    C. elegans is a powerful model system, in which genetic and molecular techniques are easily applicable. Until recently though, techniques that require direct access to cells and isolation of specific cell types, could not be applied in C. elegans. This limitation was due to the fact that tissues are confined within a pressurized cuticle which is not easily digested by treatment with enzymes and/or detergents. Based on early pioneer work by Laird Bloom, Christensen and colleagues 1 developed a robust method for culturing C. elegans embryonic cells in large scale. Eggs are isolated from gravid adults by treatment with bleach/NaOH and subsequently treated with chitinase to remove the eggshells. Embryonic cells are then dissociated by manual pipetting and plated onto substrate-covered glass in serum-enriched media. Within 24 hr of isolation cells begin to differentiate by changing morphology and by expressing cell specific markers. C. elegans cells cultured using this method survive for up 2 weeks in vitro and have been used for electrophysiological, immunochemical, and imaging analyses as well as they have been sorted and used for microarray profiling. PMID:24084243

  11. Mechanotransduction: Feeling the Squeeze in the C. elegans Reproductive System

    PubMed Central

    Cram, Erin J.

    2015-01-01

    A new study reports that the RhoGAP SPV-1 senses membrane curvature and cell stretch in the Caenorhabditis elegans spermatheca. Without SPV-1, the cells of the spermatheca are hypercontractile, leading to deformation and rapid ejection of the fertilized eggs. The spermatheca may provide a paradigm for understanding how cells detect mechanical stimuli in vivo. PMID:25602308

  12. Material Properties of Caenorhabditis elegans Swimming at Low Reynolds Number

    PubMed Central

    Sznitman, J.; Purohit, Prashant K.; Krajacic, P.; Lamitina, T.; Arratia, P.E.

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Undulatory locomotion, as seen in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, is a common swimming gait of organisms in the low Reynolds number regime, where viscous forces are dominant. Although the nematode's motility is expected to be a strong function of its material properties, measurements remain scarce. Here, the swimming behavior of C. elegans is investigated in experiments and in a simple model. Experiments reveal that nematodes swim in a periodic fashion and generate traveling waves that decay from head to tail. The model is able to capture the experiments' main features and is used to estimate the nematode's Young's modulus E and tissue viscosity ?. For wild-type C. elegans, we find E ? 3.77 kPa and ? ? ?860 Pa·s; values of ? for live C. elegans are negative because the tissue is generating rather than dissipating energy. Results show that material properties are sensitive to changes in muscle functional properties, and are useful quantitative tools with which to more accurately describe new and existing muscle mutants. PMID:20159158

  13. Using Caenorhabditis elegans as a Model for Obesity Pharmacology Development.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Jolene; Vasselli, Joseph R; King, Jason F; King, Michael L; We, Wenqian; Fitzpatrick, Zachary; Johnson, William D; Finley, John W; Martin, Roy J; Keenan, Michael J; Enright, Frederic M; Greenway, Frank L

    2014-05-01

    The Caenorhabditis elegans model is a rapid and inexpensive method to address pharmacologic questions. We describe the use of C. elegans to explore 2 pharmacologic questions concerning candidate antiobesity drugs and illustrate its potential usefulness in pharmacologic research: (1) to determine a ratio of betahistine-olanzapine that blocks the olanzapine-induced intestinal fat deposition (IFD) as detected by Nile red staining and (2) to identify the mechanism of action of a pharmaceutical candidate AB-101 that reduces IFD. Olanzapine (53 ?g/mL) increased the IFD (12.1 ± 0.1%, P < 0.02), which was blocked by betahistine (763 ?g/mL, 39.3 ± 0.01%, P < 0.05) in wild-type C. elegans (N2). AB-101 (1.0%) reduced the IFD in N2 (P < 0.05), increased the pharyngeal pumping rate (P < 0.05), and reversed the elevated IFD induced by protease inhibitors atazanavir and ritonavir (P < 0.05). AB-101 did not affect IFD in a ACS null mutant strain acs-4(ok2872) III/hT2[bli-4(e937) let-?(q782) qIs48](I;III) suggesting an involvement of the lipid oxidation pathway and an upregulation of CPT-1. Our studies suggest that C. elegans may be used as a resource in pharmacologic research. This article is intended to stimulate a greater appreciation of its value in the development of new pharmaceutical interventions. PMID:24786852

  14. An Elegant Mind: Learning and Memory in "Caenorhabditis elegans"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ardiel, Evan L.; Rankin, Catharine H.

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews the literature on learning and memory in the soil-dwelling nematode "Caenorhabditis elegans." Paradigms include nonassociative learning, associative learning, and imprinting, as worms have been shown to habituate to mechanical and chemical stimuli, as well as learn the smells, tastes, temperatures, and oxygen levels that…

  15. High-Throughput Gene Mapping in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Swan, Kathryn A.; Curtis, Damian E.; McKusick, Kathleen B.; Voinov, Alexander V.; Mapa, Felipa A.; Cancilla, Michael R.

    2002-01-01

    Positional cloning of mutations in model genetic systems is a powerful method for the identification of targets of medical and agricultural importance. To facilitate the high-throughput mapping of mutations in Caenorhabditis elegans, we have identified a further 9602 putative new single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) between two C. elegans strains, Bristol N2 and the Hawaiian mapping strain CB4856, by sequencing inserts from a CB4856 genomic DNA library and using an informatics pipeline to compare sequences with the canonical N2 genomic sequence. When combined with data from other laboratories, our marker set of 17,189 SNPs provides even coverage of the complete worm genome. To date, we have confirmed >1099 evenly spaced SNPs (one every 91 ± 56 kb) across the six chromosomes and validated the utility of our SNP marker set and new fluorescence polarization-based genotyping methods for systematic and high-throughput identification of genes in C. elegans by cloning several proprietary genes. We illustrate our approach by recombination mapping and confirmation of the mutation in the cloned gene, dpy-18. [The sequence data described in this paper have been submitted to the NCBI dbSNP data library under accession nos. 4388625–4389689 and GenBank dbSTS under accession nos. 973810–974874. The following individuals and institutions kindly provided reagents, samples, or unpublished information as indicated in the paper: The C. elegans Sequencing Consortium and The Caenorhabditis Genetics Center.] PMID:12097347

  16. A pharmacological network for lifespan extension in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Xiaolan; Linton, James M; Schork, Nicholas J; Buck, Linda B; Petrascheck, Michael

    2014-01-01

    One goal of aging research is to find drugs that delay the onset of age-associated disease. Studies in invertebrates, particularly Caenorhabditis elegans, have uncovered numerous genes involved in aging, many conserved in mammals. However, which of these encode proteins suitable for drug targeting is unknown. To investigate this question, we screened a library of compounds with known mammalian pharmacology for compounds that increase C. elegans lifespan. We identified 60 compounds that increase longevity in C. elegans, 33 of which also increased resistance to oxidative stress. Many of these compounds are drugs approved for human use. Enhanced resistance to oxidative stress was associated primarily with compounds that target receptors for biogenic amines, such as dopamine or serotonin. A pharmacological network constructed with these data reveal that lifespan extension and increased stress resistance cluster together in a few pharmacological classes, most involved in intercellular signaling. These studies identify compounds that can now be explored for beneficial effects on aging in mammals, as well as tools that can be used to further investigate the mechanisms underlying aging in C. elegans. PMID:24134630

  17. Identification of an estrogenic hormone receptor in Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Mimoto, Ai; Fujii, Madoka; Usami, Makoto; Shimamura, Maki; Hirabayashi, Naoko; Kaneko, Takako; Sasagawa, Noboru; Ishiura, Shoichi

    2007-12-28

    Changes in both behavior and gene expression occur in Caenorhabditis elegans following exposure to sex hormones such as estrogen and progesterone, and to bisphenol A (BPA), an estrogenic endocrine-disrupting compound. However, only one steroid hormone receptor has been identified. Of the 284 known nuclear hormone receptors (NHRs) in C. elegans, we selected nhr-14, nhr-69, and nhr-121 for analysis as potential estrogenic hormone receptors, because they share sequence similarity with the human estrogen receptor. First, the genes were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli, and then the affinity of each protein for estrogen was determined using a surface plasmon resonance (SPR) biosensor. All three NHRs bound estrogen in a dose-dependent fashion. To evaluate the specificity of the binding, we performed a solution competition assay using an SPR biosensor. According to our results, only NHR-14 was able to interact with estrogen. Therefore, we next examined whether nhr-14 regulates estrogen signaling in vivo. To investigate whether these interactions actually control the response of C. elegans to hormones, we investigated the expression of vitellogenin, an estrogen responsive gene, in an nhr-14 mutant. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR showed that vitellogenin expression was significantly reduced in the mutant. This suggests that NHR-14 is a C. elegans estrogenic hormone receptor and that it controls gene expression in response to estrogen.

  18. C.V. Riley’s lost aphids: Siphonophora fragariae var. immaculata and Aphis rapae var. laevigata (Hemiptera: Aphididae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The syntypes of Siphonophora fragariae var. immaculata Riley were rediscovered in the Aphidoidea collection of the United States of America National Museum of Natural History. Previously, S. fragariae immaculata was largely lost and forgotten. Through examination of the specimens, we hereby establ...

  19. Characterization of the arginine kinase isoforms in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Fraga, Dean; Aryal, Manish; Hall, Joseph E; Rae, Evan; Snider, Mark

    2015-09-01

    Phosphagen kinases (PKs) are well-studied enzymes involved in energy homeostasis in a wide range of animal, protozoan, and even some bacterial species. Recent genome efforts have allowed comparative work on the PKs to extend beyond the biochemistry of individual proteins to the comparative cellular physiology and examining of the role of all PK family members in an organism. The sequencing of the Caenorhabditis elegans genome and availability of sophisticated genetic tools within that system affords the opportunity to conduct a detailed physiological analysis of the PKs from a well known invertebrate for comparison with the extensive work conducted on vertebrate systems. As a first step in this effort we have carried out a detailed molecular genetic and biochemical characterization of the PKs in C. elegans. Our results reveal that C. elegans has five PK genes encoding arginine kinases that range in catalytic efficiency (kcat/KM(Arg)) from (3.1±0.6)×10(4) to (9±4)×10(5) M(-1) s(-1). This range is generally within the range seen for arginine kinases from a variety of species. Our molecular genetic and phylogenetic analysis reveals that the gene family has undergone extensive intron loss and gain within the suborder Rhabditina. In addition, within C. elegans we find evidence of gene duplication and loss. The analysis described here for the C. elegans AKs represents one of the most complete biochemical and molecular genetic analysis of a PK family within a genetically tractable invertebrate system and opens up the possibility of conducting detailed physiological comparisons with vertebrate systems using the sophisticated tools available with this model invertebrate system. PMID:25981702

  20. Together or alone?: foraging strategies in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Boender, Arjen J; Roubos, Eric W; van der Velde, Gerard

    2011-11-01

    A central goal in Life Sciences is to understand how genes encode behaviour and how environmental factors influence the expression of the genes concerned. To reach this goal a combined ecological, molecular biological and physiological approach is required in combination with a suitable model organism. Such an approach allows the elucidation of all parts of the complicated chain of events that lead from induction of gene expression to behaviour, i.e. from environmental stimulus, sensory organs and extracellular and intracellular neuronal signal processing to activation of effector organs. A particularly good model species with which to take this approach is the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, as it has been described in great detail at the genomic, cellular and behavioural levels. Different strains of C. elegans display prominent behavioural variation in foraging behaviour. Some strains will form social feeding groups when subjected to certain environmental stimuli, while others do not. This variation is due to the existence of just two isoforms of the gene npr-1, namely 215F and 215V. Here, we describe these behavioural variations at the molecular and cellular levels to attempt to determine the environmental inputs that cause aggregation of these small nematodes. As many different stimuli affect aggregation either positively or negatively, aggregation behaviour seems to be displayed when it improves survival chances. However, not much is known about the ecological context in which C. elegans lives. Investigation of the habitats of different strains of C. elegans would help us to understand why and how a specific foraging strategy enhances survival. The relatively well-understood molecular pathways that direct its social feeding behaviour make C. elegans a highly suitable model organism to test ecological and behavioural hypotheses about the mechanisms that differentiate between aggregation and solitary behaviours. PMID:21314888

  1. SKN-1/Nrf, stress responses, and aging in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Blackwell, T Keith; Steinbaugh, Michael J; Hourihan, John M; Ewald, Collin Y; Isik, Meltem

    2015-11-01

    The mammalian Nrf/CNC proteins (Nrf1, Nrf2, Nrf3, p45 NF-E2) perform a wide range of cellular protective and maintenance functions. The most thoroughly described of these proteins, Nrf2, is best known as a regulator of antioxidant and xenobiotic defense, but more recently has been implicated in additional functions that include proteostasis and metabolic regulation. In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, which offers many advantages for genetic analyses, the Nrf/CNC proteins are represented by their ortholog SKN-1. Although SKN-1 has diverged in aspects of how it binds DNA, it exhibits remarkable functional conservation with Nrf/CNC proteins in other species and regulates many of the same target gene families. C. elegans may therefore have considerable predictive value as a discovery model for understanding how mammalian Nrf/CNC proteins function and are regulated in vivo. Work in C. elegans indicates that SKN-1 regulation is surprisingly complex and is influenced by numerous growth, nutrient, and metabolic signals. SKN-1 is also involved in a wide range of homeostatic functions that extend well beyond the canonical Nrf2 function in responses to acute stress. Importantly, SKN-1 plays a central role in diverse genetic and pharmacologic interventions that promote C. elegans longevity, suggesting that mechanisms regulated by SKN-1 may be of conserved importance in aging. These C. elegans studies predict that mammalian Nrf/CNC protein functions and regulation may be similarly complex and that the proteins and processes that they regulate are likely to have a major influence on mammalian life- and healthspan. PMID:26232625

  2. Decline of nucleotide excision repair capacity in aging Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Joel N; Boyd, Windy A; Azzam, Gregory A; Haugen, Astrid C; Freedman, Jonathan H; Van Houten, Bennett

    2007-01-01

    Background Caenorhabditis elegans is an important model for the study of DNA damage and repair related processes such as aging, neurodegeneration, and carcinogenesis. However, DNA repair is poorly characterized in this organism. We adapted a quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay to characterize repair of DNA damage induced by ultraviolet type C (UVC) radiation in C. elegans, and then tested whether DNA repair rates were affected by age in adults. Results UVC radiation induced lesions in young adult C. elegans, with a slope of 0.4 to 0.5 lesions per 10 kilobases of DNA per 100 J/m2, in both nuclear and mitochondrial targets. L1 and dauer larvae were more than fivefold more sensitive to lesion formation than were young adults. Nuclear repair kinetics in a well expressed nuclear gene were biphasic in nongravid adult nematodes: a faster, first order (half-life about 16 hours) phase lasting approximately 24 hours and resulting in removal of about 60% of the photoproducts was followed by a much slower phase. Repair in ten nuclear DNA regions was 15% and 50% higher in more actively transcribed regions in young and aging adults, respectively. Finally, repair was reduced by 30% to 50% in each of the ten nuclear regions in aging adults. However, this decrease in repair could not be explained by a reduction in expression of nucleotide excision repair genes, and we present a plausible mechanism, based on gene expression data, to account for this decrease. Conclusion Repair of UVC-induced DNA damage in C. elegans is similar kinetically and genetically to repair in humans. Furthermore, this important repair process slows significantly in aging C. elegans, the first whole organism in which this question has been addressed. PMID:17472752

  3. MicroRNA binding sites in C. elegans 3' UTRs.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chaochun; Rennie, William A; Mallick, Bibekanand; Kanoria, Shaveta; Long, Dang; Wolenc, Adam; Carmack, C Steven; Ding, Ye

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression. Since the discovery of lin-4, the founding member of the miRNA family, over 360 miRNAs have been identified for Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). Prediction and validation of targets are essential for elucidation of regulatory functions of these miRNAs. For C. elegans, crosslinking immunoprecipitation (CLIP) has been successfully performed for the identification of target mRNA sequences bound by Argonaute protein ALG-1. In addition, reliable annotation of the 3' untranslated regions (3' UTRs) as well as developmental stage-specific expression profiles for both miRNAs and 3' UTR isoforms are available. By utilizing these data, we developed statistical models and bioinformatics tools for both transcriptome-scale and developmental stage-specific predictions of miRNA binding sites in C. elegans 3' UTRs. In performance evaluation via cross validation on the ALG-1 CLIP data, the models were found to offer major improvements over established algorithms for predicting both seed sites and seedless sites. In particular, our top-ranked predictions have a substantially higher true positive rate, suggesting a much higher likelihood of positive experimental validation. A gene ontology analysis of stage-specific predictions suggests that miRNAs are involved in dynamic regulation of biological functions during C. elegans development. In particular, miRNAs preferentially target genes related to development, cell cycle, trafficking, and cell signaling processes. A database for both transcriptome-scale and stage-specific predictions and software for implementing the prediction models are available through the Sfold web server at http://sfold.wadsworth.org. PMID:24827614

  4. Propulsion by sinusoidal locomotion: A motion inspired by Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ulrich, Xialing

    Sinusoidal locomotion is commonly seen in snakes, fish, nematodes, or even the wings of some birds and insects. This doctoral thesis presents the study of sinusoidal locomotion of the nematode C. elegans in experiments and the application of the state-space airloads theory to the theoretical forces of sinusoidal motion. An original MATLAB program has been developed to analyze the video records of C. elegans' movement in different fluids, including Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluids. The experimental and numerical studies of swimming C. elegans has revealed three conclusions. First, though the amplitude and wavelength are varying with time, the motion of swimming C. elegans can still be viewed as sinusoidal locomotion with slips. The average normalized wavelength is a conserved character of the locomotion for both Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluids. Second, fluid viscosity affects the frequency but not the moving speed of C. elegans, while fluid elasticity affects the moving speed but not the frequency. Third, by the resistive force theory, for more elastic fluids the ratio of resistive coefficients becomes smaller. Inspired by the motion of C. elegans and other animals performing sinusoidal motion, we investigated the sinusoidal motion of a thin flexible wing in theory. Given the equation of the motion, we have derived the closed forms of propulsive force, lift and other generalized forces applying on the wing. We also calculated the power required to perform the motion, the power lost due to the shed vortices and the propulsive efficiency. These forces and powers are given as functions of reduced frequency k, dimensionless wavelength z, dimensionless amplitude A/b, and time. Our results show that a positive, time-averaged propulsive force is produced for all k>k0=pi/ z. At k=k0, which implies the moment when the moving speed of the wing is the same as the wave speed of its undulation, the motion reaches a steady state with all forces being zero. If there were no shed vorticity effects, the propulsive force would be zero at z = 0.569 and z = 1.3 for all k, and for a fixed k the wing would gain the optimal propulsive force when z = 0.82. With the effects of shed vorticity, the propulsive efficiency decreases from 1.0 to 0.5 as k goes to infinity, and the propulsive efficiency increases almost in a linear relationship with k0.

  5. Unidirectional, electrotactic-response valve for Caenorhabditis elegans in microfluidic devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carr, John A.; Lycke, Roy; Parashar, Archana; Pandey, Santosh

    2011-04-01

    We report a nematode electrotactic-response valve (NERV) to control the locomotion of Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) in microfluidic devices. This nonmechanical, unidirectional valve is based on creating a confined region of lateral electric field that is switchable and reversible. We observed that C. elegans do not prefer to pass through this region if the field lines are incident to its forward movement. Upon reaching the boundary of the NERV, the incident worms partially penetrate the field region, pull back, and turn around. The NERV is tested on three C. elegans mutants: wild-type (N2), lev-8, and acr-16.

  6. Identification of Phytophthora fragariae var. rubi by PCR.

    PubMed

    Schlenzig, Alexandra

    2009-01-01

    The following chapter describes a PCR method for the identification of the raspberry root rot pathogen Phytophthora fragariae var. rubi. Furthermore, a nested PCR suitable for the detection of the pathogen in infected raspberry roots and validated against the "Duncan bait test" (EPPO Bull 35:87-91, 2005) is explained. Protocols for different DNA extraction methods are given which can be transferred to other fungal pathogens. PMID:19301754

  7. Graft-related endocarditis caused by Neosartorya fischeri var. spinosa.

    PubMed Central

    Summerbell, R C; de Repentigny, L; Chartrand, C; St Germain, G

    1992-01-01

    The first case of endocarditis caused by Neosartorya fischeri var. spinosa is reported. The patient was a child who received a calf pericardium graft after removal of a previously inserted Dacron graft associated with deterioration of adjacent tissue. Copious vegetations removed from the heart were found to be composed of septate hyaline fungal filaments. The fungus was recognized in culture by its bivalved, winged, spiny ascospores, its Aspergillus fischerianus anamorph, and its thermotolerance. Images PMID:1624579

  8. Allozyme Variation in Endangered Castanea pumila var. pumila

    PubMed Central

    FU, YUQING; DANE, FENNY

    2003-01-01

    Allozyme genetic variation in 12 populations of the endangered Castanea pumila var. pumila (Allegheny chinkapin), sampled across the natural range of the species in the United States, was evaluated using 11 loci from seven enzyme systems. At the species level, the percentage of polymorphic loci (Ps) was 72·7 %, the mean number of alleles per locus (As) was 1·9, the mean number of alleles per polymorphic locus (APs) was 2·3, the effective number of alleles per locus (Aes) was 1·5 and the genetic diversity (Hes) was 0·296. At the population level, Pp = 49·2 %, Ap = 1·5, Aep = 1·4, APp = 2·1 and Hep = 0·21. Most of the allozyme variation (70 %) in C. pumila var. pumila occurred within populations. Wright’s gene flow rate [Nm(W)] was as low as 0·57. Population differentiation along the species range was not detected. Populations of C. pumila var. pumila in Florida had the most variable levels of genetic diversity, but populations in Virginia and Mississippi also showed high levels. Based on the results of this study, conservation management strategies are discussed. PMID:12829445

  9. Calcineurin may regulate multiple endocytic processes in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Song, Hyun-Ok; Ahnn, Joohong

    2011-02-01

    Calcineurin is a serine/threonine protein phosphatase controlled by Ca(2+) and calmodulin that has been implicated in various signaling pathways. Previously, we reported that calcineurin regulates coelomocyte endocytosis in Caenorhabditis elegans. So far, simple and powerful in vivo approaches have been developed to study various endocytic processes in C. elegans. Using these in vivo assays, we further analyzed the endocytic phenotypes of calcineurin mutants. We observed that the calcineurin mutants were defective in apical endocytosis in the intestine as well as synaptic vesicle recycling in the nerve cord. However, we found that calcineurin mutants displayed normal receptor-mediated endocytosis in oocytes. Therefore, our results suggest that calcineurin may regulate specific sets of endocytic processes in nematode. PMID:21345307

  10. A comparison of tracking methods for swimming C. Elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Restif, Christophe; Metaxas, Dimitris

    2010-03-01

    Tracking the swimming motion of C. elegans worms is of high interest for a variety of research projects on behavior in biology, from aging to mating studies. We compare six different tracking methods, derived from two types of image preprocessing, namely local and global thresholding methods, and from three types of segmentation methods: low-level vision, and articulated models of either constant or varying width. All these methods have been successfully used in recent related works, with some modifications to adapt them to swimming motions. We show a quantitative comparison of these methods using computer-vision measures. To discuss their relative strengths and weaknesses, we consider three scenarios of behavior studies, depending on the constraints of a C. elegans project, and give suggestions as to which methods are more adapted to each case, and how to further improve them.

  11. A Caenorhabditis elegans model for ether lipid biosynthesis and function.

    PubMed

    Shi, Xun; Tarazona, Pablo; Brock, Trisha J; Browse, John; Feussner, Ivo; Watts, Jennifer L

    2016-02-01

    Ether lipids are widespread in nature, and they are structurally and functionally important components of membranes. The roundworm, Caenorhabditis elegans, synthesizes numerous lipid species containing alkyl and alkenyl ether bonds. We isolated C. elegans strains carrying loss-of-function mutations in three genes encoding the proteins required for the initial three steps in the ether lipid biosynthetic pathway, FARD-1/FAR1, ACL-7/GNPAT, and ADS-1/AGPS. Analysis of the mutant strains show that they lack ether lipids, but possess the ability to alter their lipid composition in response to lack of ether lipids. We found that increases in de novo fatty acid synthesis and reduction of stearoyl- and palmitoyl-CoA desaturase activity, processes that are at least partially regulated transcriptionally, mediate the altered lipid composition in ether lipid-deficient mutants. Phenotypic analysis demonstrated the importance of ether lipids for optimal fertility, lifespan, survival at cold temperatures, and resistance to oxidative stress.Caenorhabditis. PMID:26685325

  12. Sensory regulation of C. elegans male mate-searching behaviour

    PubMed Central

    Barrios, Arantza; Nurrish, Stephen; Emmons, Scott W.

    2009-01-01

    Summary How do animals integrate internal drives and external environmental cues to coordinate behaviours? We address this question studying mate-searching behaviour in C. elegans. C. elgans males explore their environment in search of mates (hermaphrodites) and will leave food if mating partners are absent. However, when mates and food coincide, male exploratory behaviour is suppressed and males are retained on the food source. We show that the drive to explore is stimulated by male specific neurons in the tail, the ray neurons. Periodic contact with the hermaphrodite detected through ray neurons changes the male’s behaviour during periods of no contact and prevents the male from leaving the food source. The hermaphrodite signal is conveyed by male-specific interneurons that are post-synaptic to the rays and that send processes to the major integrative center in the head. This study identifies key parts of the neural circuit that regulates a sexual appetitive behaviour in C. elegans. PMID:19062284

  13. Transcriptional Regulation of Gene Expression in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Reinke, Valerie; Krause, Michael; Okkema, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Protein coding gene sequences are converted to mRNA by the highly regulated process of transcription. The precise temporal and spatial control of transcription for many genes is an essential part of development in metazoans. Thus, understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying transcriptional control is essential to understanding cell fate determination during embryogenesis, post-embryonic development, many environmental interactions, and disease-related processes. Studies of transcriptional regulation in C. elegans exploit its genomic simplicity and physical characteristics to define regulatory events with single cell and minute time scale resolution. When combined with the genetics of the system, C. elegans offers a unique and powerful vantage point from which to study how chromatin-associated protein and their modifications interact with transcription factors and their binding sites to yield precise control of gene expression through transcriptional regulation. PMID:23801596

  14. C. elegans as a model for membrane traffic

    PubMed Central

    Sato, Ken; Norris, Anne; Sato, Miyuki; Grant, Barth D.

    2014-01-01

    The counterbalancing action of the endocytosis and secretory pathways maintains a dynamic equilibrium that regulates the composition of the plasma membrane, allowing it to maintain homeostasis and to change rapidly in response to changes in the extracellular environment and/or intracellular metabolism. These pathways are intimately integrated with intercellular signaling systems and play critical roles in all cells. Studies in Caenorhabditis elegans have revealed diverse roles of membrane trafficking in physiology and development and have also provided molecular insight into the fundamental mechanisms that direct cargo sorting, vesicle budding, and membrane fisson and fusion. In this review, we summarize progress in understanding membrane trafficking mechanisms derived from work in C. elegans, focusing mainly on work done in non-neuronal cell-types, especially the germline, early embryo, coelomocytes, and intestine. PMID:24778088

  15. Direct measurements of drag forces in C. elegans crawling locomotion.

    PubMed

    Rabets, Yegor; Backholm, Matilda; Dalnoki-Veress, Kari; Ryu, William S

    2014-10-21

    With a simple and versatile microcantilever-based force measurement technique, we have probed the drag forces involved in Caenorhabditis elegans locomotion. As a worm crawls on an agar surface, we found that substrate viscoelasticity introduces nonlinearities in the force-velocity relationships, yielding nonconstant drag coefficients that are not captured by original resistive force theory. A major contributing factor to these nonlinearities is the formation of a shallow groove on the agar surface. We measured both the adhesion forces that cause the worm's body to settle into the agar and the resulting dynamics of groove formation. Furthermore, we quantified the locomotive forces produced by C. elegans undulatory motions on a wet viscoelastic agar surface. We show that an extension of resistive force theory is able to use the dynamics of a nematode's body shape along with the measured drag coefficients to predict the forces generated by a crawling nematode. PMID:25418179

  16. High-throughput imaging of neuronal activity in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Larsch, Johannes; Ventimiglia, Donovan; Bargmann, Cornelia I.; Albrecht, Dirk R.

    2013-01-01

    Neuronal responses to sensory inputs can vary based on genotype, development, experience, or stochastic factors. Existing neuronal recording techniques examine a single animal at a time, limiting understanding of the variability and range of potential responses. To scale up neuronal recordings, we here describe a system for simultaneous wide-field imaging of neuronal calcium activity from at least 20 Caenorhabditis elegans animals under precise microfluidic chemical stimulation. This increased experimental throughput was used to perform a systematic characterization of chemosensory neuron responses to multiple odors, odor concentrations, and temporal patterns, as well as responses to pharmacological manipulation. The system allowed recordings from sensory neurons and interneurons in freely moving animals, whose neuronal responses could be correlated with behavior. Wide-field imaging provides a tool for comprehensive circuit analysis with elevated throughput in C. elegans. PMID:24145415

  17. Granulicatella elegans endocarditis: a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge.

    PubMed

    Patri, Sandeep; Agrawal, Yashwant

    2016-01-01

    A 63-year-old man with a history of non-ischaemic cardiomyopathy presented with acute worsening of heart failure and septic shock. Echocardiogram revealed a large aortic valve vegetation with new onset severe aortic incompetence. Blood cultures grew Granulicatella elegans, for which antimicrobial sensitivities could not be carried out in our lab. Despite antibiotic therapy and aggressive care, the patient's clinical condition worsened and he died. G. elegans, previously grouped under nutrient variant streptococci (NVS), is an extremely rare cause for bacterial infective endocarditis (IE). Unlike with the Viridans group, IE caused by NVS has a very poor outcome and higher mortality rate. The difficulty in isolation of the bacteria in culture, inability to reliably measure antibiotic susceptibility in vitro, frequent treatment failure and complications such as multivalvular involvement, make this an extremely challenging infection to treat. Early detection of the organism, appropriate antibiotics and early surgical management when indicated, are key to management. PMID:26921367

  18. Developmental decisions: balancing genetics and the environment by C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Tobin, David V; Saito, Richard Mako

    2012-05-01

    The small nematode C. elegans is characterized by developing through a highly coordinated, reproducible cell lineage that serves as the basis of many studies focusing on the development of multi-lineage organisms. Indeed, the reproducible cell lineage enables discovery of developmental defects that occur in even a single cell. Only recently has attention been focused on how these animals modify their genetically programmed cell lineages to adapt to altered environments. Here, we summarize the current understanding of how C. elegans responds to food deprivation by adapting their developmental program in order to conserve energy. In particular, we highlight the AMPK-mediated and insulin-like growth factor signaling pathways that are the principal regulators of induced cell cycle quiescence. PMID:22510569

  19. Fucoxanthin increases lifespan of Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Lashmanova, Ekaterina; Proshkina, Ekaterina; Zhikrivetskaya, Svetlana; Shevchenko, Oksana; Marusich, Elena; Leonov, Sergey; Melerzanov, Alex; Zhavoronkov, Alex; Moskalev, Alexey

    2015-10-01

    The pharmacological activation of stress-defense mechanisms is one of the perspective ways to increase human lifespan. The goal of the present study was to study the effects on lifespan of Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans of two carotenoids: ß-carotene and fucoxanthin, which are bioactive natural substances in human diet. In addition, the effects of carotenoids on the flies survival were studied under stress conditions, including starvation, thermal stress (35°C), oxidative stress (20 mM paraquat), as well as locomotor activity, fecundity, and genes expression level. Our results demonstrated lifespan extension of flies by both carotenoids. However, the positive effects on the lifespan of C. elegans were revealed only for fucoxanthin. In presence of carotenoids decreased flies' fecundity, increased spontaneous locomotor activity and resistance to oxidative stress were detected. PMID:26292053

  20. Caenorhabditis elegans ATAD-3 modulates mitochondrial iron and heme homeostasis.

    PubMed

    van den Ecker, Daniela; Hoffmann, Michael; Müting, Gesine; Maglioni, Silvia; Herebian, Diran; Mayatepek, Ertan; Ventura, Natascia; Distelmaier, Felix

    2015-11-13

    ATAD3 (ATPase family AAA domain-containing protein 3) is a mitochondrial protein, which is essential for cell viability and organismal development. ATAD3 has been implicated in several important cellular processes such as apoptosis regulation, respiratory chain function and steroid hormone biosynthesis. Moreover, altered expression of ATAD3 has been associated with several types of cancer. However, the exact mechanisms underlying ATAD3 effects on cellular metabolism remain largely unclear. Here, we demonstrate that Caenorhabditis elegans ATAD-3 is involved in mitochondrial iron and heme homeostasis. Knockdown of atad-3 caused mitochondrial iron- and heme accumulation. This was paralleled by changes in the expression levels of several iron- and heme-regulatory genes as well as an increased heme uptake. In conclusion, our data indicate a regulatory role of C. elegans ATAD-3 in mitochondrial iron and heme metabolism. PMID:26427876

  1. C. elegans epigenetic regulation in development and aging

    PubMed Central

    González-Aguilera, Cristina; Palladino, Francesca

    2014-01-01

    The precise developmental map of the Caenorhabditis elegans cell lineage, as well as a complete genome sequence and feasibility of genetic manipulation make this nematode species highly attractive to study the role of epigenetics during development. Genetic dissection of phenotypical traits, such as formation of egg-laying organs or starvation-resistant dauer larvae, has illustrated how chromatin modifiers may regulate specific cell-fate decisions and behavioral programs. Moreover, the transparent body of C. elegans facilitates non-invasive microscopy to study tissue-specific accumulation of heterochromatin at the nuclear periphery. We also review here recent findings on how small RNA molecules contribute to epigenetic control of gene expression that can be propagated for several generations and eventually determine longevity. PMID:24326118

  2. A microfluidic device for efficient chemical testing using Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Song, Pengfei; Zhang, Weize; Sobolevski, Alexandre; Bernard, Kristine; Hekimi, Siegfried; Liu, Xinyu

    2015-04-01

    The nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans has been employed as a popular model organism in many fields of biological research. In this paper, we present a microfluidic device for facilitating chemical testing using C. elegans. For testing chemicals on chip, the device houses single nematodes in microfluidic chambers and precisely adjusts the chamber's chemical environment during experiments. Eight nematodes can be readily loaded into the chambers through separate loading channels in a quick and gentle manner. In addition, a custom-made software with a graphic user interface is also created for quantitative analysis of locomotion parameters (swimming frequency and bend amplitude) of the nematodes in response to chemical stimuli, thus greatly enhancing the efficiency of data collection. We perform proof-of-concept experiments using two chemicals, zinc ion (Zn(2+)) and glucose, to demonstrate the effectiveness of the microfluidic device. PMID:25744157

  3. Complete mitochondrial genome of Xingguo red carp (Cyprinus carpio var. singuonensis) and purse red carp (Cyprinus carpio var. wuyuanensis).

    PubMed

    Hu, Guang-Fu; Liu, Xiang-Jiang; Li, Zhong; Liang, Hong-Wei; Hu, Shao-Na; Zou, Gui-Wei

    2016-01-01

    The complete mitochondrial genomes of Xingguo red carp (Cyprinus carpio var. singuonensis) and purse red carp (Cyprinus carpio var. wuyuanensis) were sequenced. Comparison of these two mitochondrial genomes revealed that the mtDNAs of these two common carp varieties were remarkably similar in genome length, gene order and content, and AT content. However, size variation between these two mitochondrial genomes presented here showed 39 site differences in overall length. About 2 site differences were located in rRNAs, 3 in tRNAs, 3 in the control region, 31 in protein-coding genes. Thirty-one variable bases in the protein-coding regions between the two varieties mitochondrial sequences led to three variable amino acids, which were mainly located in the protein ND5 and ND4. PMID:24521498

  4. A soil bioassay using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Freeman, M.N.; Peredney, C.L.; Williams, P.L.

    1999-07-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans is a free-livings soil nematode that is commonly used as a biological model. Recently, much work has been done using the nematode as a toxicological model as well. Much of the work involving C. elegans has been performed in aquatic media, since it lives in the interstitial water of soil. However, testing in soil would be expected to more accurately reproduce the organism's normal environment and may take into consideration other factors not available in an aquatic test, i.e., toxicant availability effects due to sorption, various chemical interactions, etc. This study used a modification of a previous experimental protocol to determine 24h LC{sub 50} values for Cu in a Cecil series soil mixture, and examined the use of CuCl{sub 2} as a reference toxicant for soil toxicity testing with C. elegans. Three different methods of determining percent lethality were used, each dependent on how the number of worms missing after the recovery process was used in the lethality calculations. Only tests having {ge}80% worm recovery and {ge}90% control survival were used in determining the LC{sub 50}s, by Probit analysis. The replicate LC{sub 50} values generated a control chart for each method of calculating percent lethality. The coefficient of variation (CV) for each of the three methods was {le}14%. The control charts and the protocol outlined in this study are intended to be used to assess test organism health and monitor precision of future soil toxicity tests with C. elegans.

  5. Allyl isothiocyanate induced stress response in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Allyl isothiocyanate (AITC) from mustard is cytotoxic; however the mechanism of its toxicity is unknown. We examined the effects of AITC on heat shock protein (HSP) 70 expression in Caenorhabditis elegans. We also examined factors affecting the production of AITC from its precursor, sinigrin, a glucosinolate, in ground Brassica juncea cv. Vulcan seed as mustard has some potential as a biopesticide. Findings An assay to determine the concentration of AITC in ground mustard seed was improved to allow the measurement of AITC release in the first minutes after exposure of ground mustard seed to water. Using this assay, we determined that temperatures above 67°C decreased sinigrin conversion to AITC in hydrated ground B. juncea seed. A pH near 6.0 was found to be necessary for AITC release. RT-qPCR revealed no significant change in HSP70A mRNA expression at low concentrations of AITC (< 0.1 μM). However, treatment with higher concentrations (> 1.0 μM) resulted in a four- to five-fold increase in expression. A HSP70 ELISA showed that AITC toxicity in C. elegans was ameliorated by the presence of ground seed from low sinigrin B. juncea cv. Arrid. Conclusions • AITC induced toxicity in C. elegans, as measured by HSP70 expression. • Conditions required for the conversion of sinigrin to AITC in ground B. juncea seed were determined. • The use of C. elegans as a bioassay to test AITC or mustard biopesticide efficacy is discussed. PMID:22093285

  6. Prokaryote-eukaryote interactions identified by using Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Peleg, Anton Y; Tampakakis, Emmanouil; Fuchs, Beth Burgwyn; Eliopoulos, George M; Moellering, Robert C; Mylonakis, Eleftherios

    2008-09-23

    Prokaryote-eukaryote interactions are ubiquitous and have important medical and environmental significance. Despite this, a paucity of data exists on the mechanisms and pathogenic consequences of bacterial-fungal encounters within a living host. We used the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a substitute host to study the interactions between two ecologically related and clinically troublesome pathogens, the prokaryote, Acinetobacter baumannii, and the eukaryote, Candida albicans. After co-infecting C. elegans with these organisms, we observed that A. baumannii inhibits filamentation, a key virulence determinant of C. albicans. This antagonistic, cross-kingdom interaction led to attenuated virulence of C. albicans, as determined by improved nematode survival when infected with both pathogens. In vitro coinfection assays in planktonic and biofilm environments supported the inhibitory effects of A. baumannii toward C. albicans, further showing a predilection of A. baumannii for C. albicans filaments. Interestingly, we demonstrate a likely evolutionary defense by C. albicans against A. baumannii, whereby C. albicans inhibits A. baumannii growth once a quorum develops. This counteroffensive is at least partly mediated by the C. albicans quorum-sensing molecule farnesol. We used the C. elegans-A. baumannii-C. albicans coinfection model to screen an A. baumannii mutant library, leading to the identification of several mutants attenuated in their inhibitory activity toward C. albicans. These findings present an extension to the current paradigm of studying monomicrobial pathogenesis in C. elegans and by use of genetic manipulation, provides a whole-animal model system to investigate the complex dynamics of a polymicrobial infection. PMID:18794525

  7. Spaceflight and ageing: reflecting on Caenorhabditis elegans in space.

    PubMed

    Honda, Yoko; Honda, Shuji; Narici, Marco; Szewczyk, Nathaniel J

    2014-01-01

    The prospect of space travel continues to capture the imagination. Several competing companies are now promising flights for the general population. Previously, it was recognized that many of the physiological changes that occur with spaceflight are similar to those seen with normal ageing. This led to the notion that spaceflight can be used as a model of accelerated ageing and raised concerns about the safety of individuals engaging in space travel. Paradoxically, however, space travel has been recently shown to be beneficial to some aspects of muscle health in the tiny worm Caenorhabditis elegans. C. elegans is a commonly used laboratory animal for studying ageing. C. elegans displays age-related decline of some biological processes observed in ageing humans, and about 35% of C. elegans' genes have human homologs. Space flown worms were found to have decreased expression of a number of genes that increase lifespan when expressed at lower levels. These changes were accompanied by decreased accumulation of toxic protein aggregates in ageing worms' muscles. Thus, in addition to spaceflight producing physiological changes that are similar to accelerated ageing, it also appears to produce some changes similar to delayed ageing. Here, we put forward the hypothesis that in addition to the previously well-appreciated mechanotransduction changes, neural and endocrine signals are altered in response to spaceflight and that these may have both negative (e.g. less muscle protein) and some positive consequences (e.g. healthier muscles), at least for invertebrates, with respect to health in space. Given that changes in circulating hormones are well documented with age and in astronauts, our view is that further research into the relationship between metabolic control, ageing, and adaptation to the environment should be productive in advancing our understanding of the physiology of both spaceflight and ageing. PMID:24217152

  8. Calcium signaling surrounding fertilization in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Singaravelu, Gunasekaran; Singson, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    Calcium plays a prominent role during fertilization in many animals. This review focuses on roles of Ca(2+) during the events around fertilization in the model organism, Caenorhabditis elegans. Specifically, the role of Ca(2+) in sperm, oocytes and the surrounding somatic tissues during fertilization will be discussed, with the focus on sperm activation, meiotic maturation of oocytes, ovulation, sperm-egg interaction and fertilization. PMID:23218668

  9. Biotransformation of fluorene by the fungus Cunninghamella elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Pothuluri, J.V.; Freeman, J.P.; Evans, F.E.; Cerniglia, C.E. )

    1993-06-01

    Fluorene, a tricyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, is formed during the combustion of fossil fuels and is an important pollutant of aquatic ecosystems where it is highly toxic to fish and algae. Few studies on microbial biodegradation of fluorene have been reported. This investigation describes the metabolism of fluorene by the fungus Cunninghamella elegans ATCC 36112 and the identification of major metabolites. 26 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  10. Paradigm shifts in cardiovascular research from Caenorhabditis elegans muscle.

    PubMed

    Epstein, Henry F; Benian, Guy M

    2012-11-01

    Research on Caenorhabditis elegans has led to the discovery of the consequences of mutation in myosin, its associated proteins, and the extracellular matrix-membrane cytoskeleton complex. Key results include understanding thick filament structure and assembly, the regulation of sarcomeric protein turnover, and the organization of thick and thin filaments into ordered sarcomeres. These results are critical to studies of cardiovascular diseases such as the cardiomyopathies, congenital septal defects, aneurysms of the thoracic aorta, and cardiac remodeling in heart failure. PMID:23146617

  11. Caenorhabditis elegans Neuromuscular Junction: GABA Receptors and Ivermectin Action

    PubMed Central

    Hernando, Guillermina; Bouzat, Cecilia

    2014-01-01

    The prevalence of human and animal helminth infections remains staggeringly high, thus urging the need for concerted efforts towards this area of research. GABA receptors, encoded by the unc-49 gene, mediate body muscle inhibition in Caenorhabditis elegans and parasitic nematodes and are targets of anthelmintic drugs. Thus, the characterization of nematode GABA receptors provides a foundation for rational anti-parasitic drug design. We therefore explored UNC-49 channels from C. elegans muscle cultured cells of the first larval stage at the electrophysiological and behavioral levels. Whole-cell recordings reveal that GABA, muscimol and the anthelmintic piperazine elicit macroscopic currents from UNC-49 receptors that decay in their sustained presence, indicating full desensitization. Single-channel recordings show that all drugs elicit openings of ?2.5 pA (+100 mV), which appear either as brief isolated events or in short bursts. The comparison of the lowest concentration required for detectable channel opening, the frequency of openings and the amplitude of macroscopic currents suggest that piperazine is the least efficacious of the three drugs. Macroscopic and single-channel GABA-activated currents are profoundly and apparently irreversibly inhibited by ivermectin. To gain further insight into ivermectin action at C. elegans muscle, we analyzed its effect on single-channel activity of the levamisol-sensitive nicotinic receptor (L-AChR), the excitatory receptor involved in neuromuscular transmission. Ivermectin produces a profound inhibition of the frequency of channel opening without significant changes in channel properties. By revealing that ivermectin inhibits C. elegans muscle GABA and L-AChR receptors, our study adds two receptors to the already known ivermectin targets, thus contributing to the elucidation of its pleiotropic effects. Behavioral assays in worms show that ivermectin potentiates piperazine-induced paralysis, thus suggesting that their combination is a good strategy to overcome the increasing resistance of parasites, an issue of global concern for human and animal health. PMID:24743647

  12. Genomic Analysis of Stress Response against Arsenic in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sahu, Surasri N.; Lewis, Jada; Patel, Isha; Bozdag, Serdar; Lee, Jeong H.; Sprando, Robert; Cinar, Hediye Nese

    2013-01-01

    Arsenic, a known human carcinogen, is widely distributed around the world and found in particularly high concentrations in certain regions including Southwestern US, Eastern Europe, India, China, Taiwan and Mexico. Chronic arsenic poisoning affects millions of people worldwide and is associated with increased risk of many diseases including arthrosclerosis, diabetes and cancer. In this study, we explored genome level global responses to high and low levels of arsenic exposure in Caenorhabditis elegans using Affymetrix expression microarrays. This experimental design allows us to do microarray analysis of dose-response relationships of global gene expression patterns. High dose (0.03%) exposure caused stronger global gene expression changes in comparison with low dose (0.003%) exposure, suggesting a positive dose-response correlation. Biological processes such as oxidative stress, and iron metabolism, which were previously reported to be involved in arsenic toxicity studies using cultured cells, experimental animals, and humans, were found to be affected in C. elegans. We performed genome-wide gene expression comparisons between our microarray data and publicly available C. elegans microarray datasets of cadmium, and sediment exposure samples of German rivers Rhine and Elbe. Bioinformatics analysis of arsenic-responsive regulatory networks were done using FastMEDUSA program. FastMEDUSA analysis identified cancer-related genes, particularly genes associated with leukemia, such as dnj-11, which encodes a protein orthologous to the mammalian ZRF1/MIDA1/MPP11/DNAJC2 family of ribosome-associated molecular chaperones. We analyzed the protective functions of several of the identified genes using RNAi. Our study indicates that C. elegans could be a substitute model to study the mechanism of metal toxicity using high-throughput expression data and bioinformatics tools such as FastMEDUSA. PMID:23894281

  13. Caenorhabditis Elegans Mutants Resistant to Inhibitors of Acetylcholinesterase

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, M.; Alfonso, A.; Johnson, C. D.; Rand, J. B.

    1995-01-01

    We characterized 18 genes from Caenorhabditis elegans that, when mutated, confer recessive resistance to inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase. These include previously described genes as well as newly identified genes; they encode essential as well as nonessential functions. In the absence of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, the different mutants display a wide range of behavioral deficits, from mild uncoordination to almost complete paralysis. Measurements of acetylcholine levels in these mutants suggest that some of the genes are involved in presynaptic functions. PMID:7498734

  14. Antifungal chemical compounds identified using a C. elegans pathogenicity assay.

    PubMed

    Breger, Julia; Fuchs, Beth Burgwyn; Aperis, George; Moy, Terence I; Ausubel, Frederick M; Mylonakis, Eleftherios

    2007-02-01

    There is an urgent need for the development of new antifungal agents. A facile in vivo model that evaluates libraries of chemical compounds could solve some of the main obstacles in current antifungal discovery. We show that Candida albicans, as well as other Candida species, are ingested by Caenorhabditis elegans and establish a persistent lethal infection in the C. elegans intestinal track. Importantly, key components of Candida pathogenesis in mammals, such as filament formation, are also involved in nematode killing. We devised a Candida-mediated C. elegans assay that allows high-throughput in vivo screening of chemical libraries for antifungal activities, while synchronously screening against toxic compounds. The assay is performed in liquid media using standard 96-well plate technology and allows the study of C. albicans in non-planktonic form. A screen of 1,266 compounds with known pharmaceutical activities identified 15 (approximately 1.2%) that prolonged survival of C. albicans-infected nematodes and inhibited in vivo filamentation of C. albicans. Two compounds identified in the screen, caffeic acid phenethyl ester, a major active component of honeybee propolis, and the fluoroquinolone agent enoxacin exhibited antifungal activity in a murine model of candidiasis. The whole-animal C. elegans assay may help to study the molecular basis of C. albicans pathogenesis and identify antifungal compounds that most likely would not be identified by in vitro screens that target fungal growth. Compounds identified in the screen that affect the virulence of Candida in vivo can potentially be used as "probe compounds" and may have antifungal activity against other fungi. PMID:17274686

  15. Neurotoxic effects of TDP-43 overexpression in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Ash, Peter E A; Zhang, Yong-Jie; Roberts, Christine M; Saldi, Tassa; Hutter, Harald; Buratti, Emanuele; Petrucelli, Leonard; Link, Christopher D

    2010-08-15

    RNA-binding protein TDP-43 has been associated with multiple neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal lobar dementia. We have engineered pan-neuronal expression of human TDP-43 protein in Caenorhabditis elegans, with the goal of generating a convenient in vivo model of TDP-43 function and neurotoxicity. Transgenic worms with the neuronal expression of human TDP-43 exhibit an 'uncoordinated' phenotype and have abnormal motorneuron synapses. Caenorhabditis elegans contains a single putative ortholog of TDP-43, designated TDP-1, which we show can support alternative splicing of CFTR in a cell-based assay. Neuronal overexpression of TDP-1 also results in an uncoordinated phenotype, while genetic deletion of the tdp-1 gene does not affect movement or alter motorneuron synapses. By using the uncoordinated phenotype as a read-out of TDP-43 overexpression neurotoxicty, we have investigated the contribution of specific TDP-43 domains and subcellular localization to toxicity. Full-length (wild-type) human TDP-43 expressed in C. elegans is localized to the nucleus. Deletion of either RNA recognition domain (RRM1 or RRM2) completely blocks neurotoxicity, as does deletion of the C-terminal region. These deleted TDP-43 variants still accumulate in the nucleus, although their subnuclear distribution is altered. Interestingly, fusion of TDP-1 C-terminal sequences to TDP-43 missing its C-terminal domain restores normal subnuclear localization and toxicity in C. elegans and CFTR splicing in cell-based assays. Overexpression of wild-type, full-length TDP-43 in mammalian cells (differentiated M17 cells) can also result in cell toxicity. Our results demonstrate that in vivo TDP-43 neurotoxicity can result from nuclear activity of overexpressed full-length protein. PMID:20530643

  16. Generation of Stable Transgenic C. elegans Using Microinjection

    PubMed Central

    Berkowitz, Laura A.; Knight, Adam L.; Caldwell, Guy A.; Caldwell, Kim A.

    2008-01-01

    Transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans can be readily created via microinjection of a DNA plasmid solution into the gonad 1. The plasmid DNA rearranges to form extrachromosomal concatamers that are stably inherited, though not with the same efficiency as actual chromosomes 2. A gene of interest is co-injected with an obvious phenotypic marker, such as rol-6 or GFP, to allow selection of transgenic animals under a dissecting microscope. The exogenous gene may be expressed from its native promoter for cellular localization studies. Alternatively, the transgene can be driven by a different tissue-specific promoter to assess the role of the gene product in that particular cell or tissue. This technique efficiently drives gene expression in all tissues of C. elegans except for the germline or early embryo 3. Creation of transgenic animals is widely utilized for a range of experimental paradigms. This video demonstrates the microinjection procedure to generate transgenic worms. Furthermore, selection and maintenance of stable transgenic C. elegans lines is described. PMID:19066505

  17. Courtship herding in the fiddler crab Uca elegans.

    PubMed

    How, Martin J; Hemmi, Jan M

    2008-12-01

    Male and female animals are not always complicit during reproduction, giving rise to coercion. One example of a system that is assumed to involve sexual coercion is the mate herding behaviour of fiddler crabs: males push females towards the home burrow with the goal of forcing copulation at the burrow entrance. We recorded and analysed in detail the courtship behaviour of a North Australian species of fiddler crab Uca elegans. Courtship was composed of four main phases: broadcast waving, outward run, herding and at burrow display. During interactions males produced claw-waving displays which were directed posteriorly towards the female and which varied in timing and structure depending on the courtship phase. We suggest that courtship herding in U. elegans is driven primarily by mate choice for the following reasons, (1) females can evade herding, (2) no other reproductive strategies were observed, (3) males broadcast their presence and accompany courtship with conspicuous claw waves, and (4) the behaviour ends with the female leading the male into the home burrow. As an alternative function for herding in U. elegans we suggest that the behaviour represents a form of courtship guiding, in which males direct complicit females to the correct home burrow. PMID:18846353

  18. Isotopic Ratio Outlier Analysis Global Metabolomics of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Szewc, Mark A.; Garrett, Timothy; Menger, Robert F.; Yost, Richard A.; Beecher, Chris; Edison, Arthur S.

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate the global metabolic analysis of Caenorhabditis elegans stress responses using a mass spectrometry-based technique called Isotopic Ratio Outlier Analysis (IROA). In an IROA protocol, control and experimental samples are isotopically labeled with 95% and 5% 13C, and the two sample populations are mixed together for uniform extraction, sample preparation, and LC-MS analysis. This labeling strategy provides several advantages over conventional approaches: 1) compounds arising from biosynthesis are easily distinguished from artifacts, 2) errors from sample extraction and preparation are minimized because the control and experiment are combined into a single sample, 3) measurement of both the molecular weight and the exact number of carbon atoms in each molecule provides extremely accurate molecular formulae, and 4) relative concentrations of all metabolites are easily determined. A heat shock perturbation was conducted on C. elegans to demonstrate this approach. We identified many compounds that significantly changed upon heat shock, including several from the purine metabolism pathway, which we use to demonstrate the approach. The metabolomic response information by IROA may be interpreted in the context of a wealth of genetic and proteomic information available for C. elegans. Furthermore, the IROA protocol can be applied to any organism that can be isotopically labeled, making it a powerful new tool in a global metabolomics pipeline. PMID:24274725

  19. In vivo Neuronal Calcium Imaging in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Gabel, Christopher V.

    2013-01-01

    The nematode worm C. elegans is an ideal model organism for relatively simple, low cost neuronal imaging in vivo. Its small transparent body and simple, well-characterized nervous system allows identification and fluorescence imaging of any neuron within the intact animal. Simple immobilization techniques with minimal impact on the animal's physiology allow extended time-lapse imaging. The development of genetically-encoded calcium sensitive fluorophores such as cameleon 1 and GCaMP 2 allow in vivo imaging of neuronal calcium relating both cell physiology and neuronal activity. Numerous transgenic strains expressing these fluorophores in specific neurons are readily available or can be constructed using well-established techniques. Here, we describe detailed procedures for measuring calcium dynamics within a single neuron in vivo using both GCaMP and cameleon. We discuss advantages and disadvantages of both as well as various methods of sample preparation (animal immobilization) and image analysis. Finally, we present results from two experiments: 1) Using GCaMP to measure the sensory response of a specific neuron to an external electrical field and 2) Using cameleon to measure the physiological calcium response of a neuron to traumatic laser damage. Calcium imaging techniques such as these are used extensively in C. elegans and have been extended to measurements in freely moving animals, multiple neurons simultaneously and comparison across genetic backgrounds. C. elegans presents a robust and flexible system for in vivo neuronal imaging with advantages over other model systems in technical simplicity and cost. PMID:23603812

  20. RNAi Screening to Identify Postembryonic Phenotypes in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Beifuss, Katherine K.; Gumienny, Tina L.

    2012-01-01

    C. elegans has proven to be a valuable model system for the discovery and functional characterization of many genes and gene pathways1. More sophisticated tools and resources for studies in this system are facilitating continued discovery of genes with more subtle phenotypes or roles. Here we present a generalized protocol we adapted for identifying C. elegans genes with postembryonic phenotypes of interest using RNAi2. This procedure is easily modified to assay the phenotype of choice, whether by light or fluorescence optics on a dissecting or compound microscope. This screening protocol capitalizes on the physical assets of the organism and molecular tools the C. elegans research community has produced. As an example, we demonstrate the use of an integrated transgene that expresses a fluorescent product in an RNAi screen to identify genes required for the normal localization of this product in late stage larvae and adults. First, we used a commercially available genomic RNAi library with full-length cDNA inserts. This library facilitates the rapid identification of multiple candidates by RNAi reduction of the candidate gene product. Second, we generated an integrated transgene that expresses our fluorecently tagged protein of interest in an RNAi-sensitive background. Third, by exposing hatched animals to RNAi, this screen permits identification of gene products that have a vital embryonic role that would otherwise mask a post-embryonic role in regulating the protein of interest. Lastly, this screen uses a compound microscope equipped for single cell resolution. PMID:22353760

  1. Translational control in the C. elegans hermaphrodite germ line.

    PubMed

    Racher, Hilary; Hansen, Dave

    2010-02-01

    The formation of a fully developed gamete from an undifferentiated germ cell requires progression through numerous developmental stages and cell fate decisions. The precise timing and level of gene expression guides cells through these stages. Translational regulation is highly utilized in the germ line of many species, including Caenorhabditis elegans, to regulate gene expression and ensure the proper formation of gametes. In this review, we discuss some of the developmental stages and cell fate decisions involved in the formation of functional gametes in the C. elegans germ line in which translational control has been implicated. These stages include the mitosis versus meiosis decision, the sperm/oocyte decision, and gamete maturation. We also discuss some of the techniques used to identify mRNA targets; the identification of these targets is necessary to clearly understand the role each RNA-binding protein plays in these decisions. Relatively few mRNA targets have been identified, thus providing a major focus for future research. Finally, we propose some reasons why translational control may be utilized so heavily in the germ line. Given that many species have this substantial reliance on translational regulation for the control of gene expression in the germ line, an understanding of translational regulation in the C. elegans germ line is likely to increase our understanding of gamete formation in general. PMID:20140027

  2. Serotonin control of thermotaxis memory behavior in nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Li, Yinxia; Zhao, Yunli; Huang, Xu; Lin, Xingfeng; Guo, Yuling; Wang, Daoyong; Li, Chaojun; Wang, Dayong

    2013-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans is as an ideal model system for the study of mechanisms underlying learning and memory. In the present study, we employed C. elegans assay system of thermotaxis memory to investigate the possible role of serotonin neurotransmitter in memory control. Our data showed that both mutations of tph-1, bas-1, and cat-4 genes, required for serotonin synthesis, and mutations of mod-5 gene, encoding a serotonin reuptake transporter, resulted in deficits in thermotaxis memory behavior. Exogenous treatment with serotonin effectively recovered the deficits in thermotaxis memory of tph-1 and bas-1 mutants to the level of wild-type N2. Neuron-specific activity assay of TPH-1 suggests that serotonin might regulate the thermotaxis memory behavior by release from the ADF sensory neurons. Ablation of ADF sensory neurons by expressing a cell-death activator gene egl-1 decreased the thermotaxis memory, whereas activation of ADF neurons by expression of a constitutively active protein kinase C homologue (pkc-1(gf)) increased the thermotaxis memory and rescued the deficits in thermotaxis memory in tph-1 mutants. Moreover, serotonin released from the ADF sensory neurons might act through the G-protein-coupled serotonin receptors of SER-4 and SER-7 to regulate the thermotaxis memory behavior. Genetic analysis implies that serotonin might further target the insulin signaling pathway to regulate the thermotaxis memory behavior. Thus, our results suggest the possible crucial role of serotonin and ADF sensory neurons in thermotaxis memory control in C. elegans. PMID:24223727

  3. The Redox System in C. elegans, a Phylogenetic Approach

    PubMed Central

    Johnston, Andrew D.; Ebert, Paul R.

    2012-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a toxic state caused by an imbalance between the production and elimination of reactive oxygen species (ROS). ROS cause oxidative damage to cellular components such as proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids. While the role of ROS in cellular damage is frequently all that is noted, ROS are also important in redox signalling. The “Redox Hypothesis" has been proposed to emphasize a dual role of ROS. This hypothesis suggests that the primary effect of changes to the redox state is modified cellular signalling rather than simply oxidative damage. In extreme cases, alteration of redox signalling can contribute to the toxicity of ROS, as well as to ageing and age-related diseases. The nematode species Caenorhabditis elegans provides an excellent model for the study of oxidative stress and redox signalling in animals. We use protein sequences from central redox systems in Homo sapiens, Drosophila melanogaster, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae to query Genbank for homologous proteins in C. elegans. We then use maximum likelihood phylogenetic analysis to compare protein families between C. elegans and the other organisms to facilitate future research into the genetics of redox biology. PMID:22899914

  4. Tat-mediated protein delivery in living Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Delom, Frederic; Fessart, Delphine; Caruso, Marie-Elaine; Chevet, Eric . E-mail: eric.chevet@mcgill.ca

    2007-01-19

    The Tat protein from HIV-1 fused with heterologous proteins traverses biological membranes in a transcellular process called: protein transduction. This has already been successfully exploited in various biological models, but never in the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans. TAT-eGFP or GST-eGFP proteins were fed to C. elegans worms, which resulted in the specific localization of Tat-eGFP to epithelial intestinal cells. This system represents an efficient tool for transcellular transduction in C. elegans intestinal cells. Indeed, this approach avoids the use of tedious purification steps to purify the TAT fusion proteins and allows for rapid analyses of the transduced proteins. In addition, it may represent an efficient tool to functionally analyze the mechanisms of protein transduction as well as to complement RNAi/KO in the epithelial intestinal system. To sum up, the advantage of this technology is to combine the potential of bacterial expression system and the Tat-mediated transduction technique in living worm.

  5. Specioside ameliorates oxidative stress and promotes longevity in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Asthana, Jyotsna; Yadav, A K; Pant, Aakanksha; Pandey, Swapnil; Gupta, M M; Pandey, Rakesh

    2015-03-01

    Specioside (6-O-coumaroylcatalpol) is an iridoid glucoside which possesses multifunctional activities viz. analgesic, antidyspeptic, astringent, liver stimulating and wound healing properties. The present study for the first time delineates stress alleviating and lifespan prolonging action of specioside (SPC), isolated from Stereospermum suaveolens in the free living, multicellular nematode model Caenorhabditis elegans. A strong correlation between lifespan extension and stress modulation in adult worms was established in a dose dependent manner. The dietary intake of this phytomolecule elevated juglone induced oxidative and heat induced thermal stress tolerance in C. elegans. On evaluation, it was found that 25 ?M dose of SPC significantly extended lifespan by 15.47% (P?0.0001) with reduction in stress level. Furthermore, SPC enhanced mean survival in mev-1 mutant suggesting its oxidative stress reducing potential. Furthermore, SPC augmented stress modulatory enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) level in C. elegans. Altogether, these findings broaden current perspectives concerning stress alleviating potentials of SPC and have implications in development of therapeutics for curing age related disorders. PMID:25619942

  6. Caenorhabditis elegans is a useful model for anthelmintic discovery

    PubMed Central

    Burns, Andrew R.; Luciani, Genna M.; Musso, Gabriel; Bagg, Rachel; Yeo, May; Zhang, Yuqian; Rajendran, Luckshika; Glavin, John; Hunter, Robert; Redman, Elizabeth; Stasiuk, Susan; Schertzberg, Michael; Angus McQuibban, G.; Caffrey, Conor R.; Cutler, Sean R.; Tyers, Mike; Giaever, Guri; Nislow, Corey; Fraser, Andy G.; MacRae, Calum A.; Gilleard, John; Roy, Peter J.

    2015-01-01

    Parasitic nematodes infect one quarter of the world's population and impact all humans through widespread infection of crops and livestock. Resistance to current anthelmintics has prompted the search for new drugs. Traditional screens that rely on parasitic worms are costly and labour intensive and target-based approaches have failed to yield novel anthelmintics. Here, we present our screen of 67,012 compounds to identify those that kill the non-parasitic nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We then rescreen our hits in two parasitic nematode species and two vertebrate models (HEK293 cells and zebrafish), and identify 30 structurally distinct anthelmintic lead molecules. Genetic screens of 19 million C. elegans mutants reveal those nematicides for which the generation of resistance is and is not likely. We identify the target of one lead with nematode specificity and nanomolar potency as complex II of the electron transport chain. This work establishes C. elegans as an effective and cost-efficient model system for anthelmintic discovery. PMID:26108372

  7. Mechanistic analysis of the search behaviour of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Salvador, Liliana C M; Bartumeus, Frederic; Levin, Simon A; Ryu, William S

    2014-03-01

    A central question in movement research is how animals use information and movement to promote encounter success. Current random search theory identifies reorientation patterns as key to the compromise between optimizing encounters for both nearby and faraway targets, but how the balance between intrinsic motor programmes and previous environmental experience determines the occurrence of these reorientation behaviours remains unknown. We used high-resolution tracking and imaging data to describe the complete motor behaviour of Caenorhabditis elegans when placed in a novel environment (one in which food is absent). Movement in C. elegans is structured around different reorientation behaviours, and we measured how these contributed to changing search strategies as worms became familiar with their new environment. This behavioural transition shows that different reorientation behaviours are governed by two processes: (i) an environmentally informed 'extrinsic' strategy that is influenced by recent experience and that controls for area-restricted search behaviour, and (ii) a time-independent, 'intrinsic' strategy that reduces spatial oversampling and improves random encounter success. Our results show how movement strategies arise from a balance between intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms, that search behaviour in C. elegans is initially determined by expectations developed from previous environmental experiences, and which reorientation behaviours are modified as information is acquired from new environments. PMID:24430127

  8. Pan-neuronal imaging in roaming Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Venkatachalam, Vivek; Ji, Ni; Wang, Xian; Clark, Christopher; Mitchell, James Kameron; Klein, Mason; Tabone, Christopher J; Florman, Jeremy; Ji, Hongfei; Greenwood, Joel; Chisholm, Andrew D; Srinivasan, Jagan; Alkema, Mark; Zhen, Mei; Samuel, Aravinthan D T

    2016-02-23

    We present an imaging system for pan-neuronal recording in crawling Caenorhabditis elegans. A spinning disk confocal microscope, modified for automated tracking of the C. elegans head ganglia, simultaneously records the activity and position of ∼80 neurons that coexpress cytoplasmic calcium indicator GCaMP6s and nuclear localized red fluorescent protein at 10 volumes per second. We developed a behavioral analysis algorithm that maps the movements of the head ganglia to the animal's posture and locomotion. Image registration and analysis software automatically assigns an index to each nucleus and calculates the corresponding calcium signal. Neurons with highly stereotyped positions can be associated with unique indexes and subsequently identified using an atlas of the worm nervous system. To test our system, we analyzed the brainwide activity patterns of moving worms subjected to thermosensory inputs. We demonstrate that our setup is able to uncover representations of sensory input and motor output of individual neurons from brainwide dynamics. Our imaging setup and analysis pipeline should facilitate mapping circuits for sensory to motor transformation in transparent behaving animals such as C. elegans and Drosophila larva. PMID:26711989

  9. Direct micro-mechanical measurements on C. elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Backholm, Matilda; Ryu, William S.; Dalnoki-Veress, Kari

    2013-03-01

    The millimeter-sized nematode Caenorhabditis elegans provides an excellent biophysical system for both static and dynamic biomechanical studies. The undulatory motion exhibited by this model organism as it crawls or swims through a medium is ubiquitous in nature at scales from microns to meters. A successful description of this form of locomotion requires knowledge of the material properties of the crawler, as well as its force output as it moves. Here we present an experimental technique with which the material properties and dynamics of C. elegans can be directly probed. By using the deflection of a flexible micropipette, the bending stiffness of C. elegans has been measured at all stages of its life cycle, as well as along the body of the adult worm. The mechanical properties of the worm are modelled as a viscoelastic material which provides new insights into its material properties. The forces exerted by the worm during undulatory motion are also discussed. Direct experimental characterization of this model organism provides guidance for theoretical treatments of undulatory locomotion in general.

  10. Fungal metabolism and detoxification of fluoranthene. [Cunninghamella elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Pothuluri, J.V.; Heflich, R.H.; Fu, P.P.; Cerniglia, C.E. )

    1992-03-01

    Five metabolites produced by Cunninghamella elegans from fluoranthene (FA) in biotransformation studies were investigated for mutagenic activity towards Salmonella typhimurium TA100 and TA104. Whereas FA displayed positive, dose-related mutagenic responses in both tester strains in the presence of a rat liver homogenate fraction, 3-FA-{beta}-glucopyranoside, 3-(8-hydroxy-FA)-{beta}-glucopyranoside, FA trans-2,3-dihydrodiol, and 8-hydroxy-FA trans-2,3-dihydrodiol were negative. 9-Hydroxy-FA trans-2,3-dihydrodiol showed a weak positive response in S. typhimurium TA100. Mutagenicity assays performed with samples extracted at 24-h intervals during incubation of C. elegans with FA for 120 h showed that mutagenic activity decreased with time. Comparative studies with rat liver microsomes indicated that FA trans-2,3-dihydrodiol, the previously identified proximal mutagenic metabolite of FA, was the major metabolite. The circular dichroism spectrum of the rat liver microsomal FA trans-2,3-dihydrodiol indicated that is was optically active. In contrast, the circular dichroism spectrum of the fungal FA trans-2,3-dihydrodiol showed no optical activity. These results indicate that C. elegans has the potential to detoxify FA and that the stereochemistry of its trans-2,3-dihydrodiol metabolite reduces its mutagenic potential.

  11. Mapping and analysis of Caenorhabditis elegans transcription factor sequence specificities

    PubMed Central

    Narasimhan, Kamesh; Lambert, Samuel A; Yang, Ally WH; Riddell, Jeremy; Mnaimneh, Sanie; Zheng, Hong; Albu, Mihai; Najafabadi, Hamed S; Reece-Hoyes, John S; Fuxman Bass, Juan I; Walhout, Albertha JM; Weirauch, Matthew T; Hughes, Timothy R

    2015-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans is a powerful model for studying gene regulation, as it has a compact genome and a wealth of genomic tools. However, identification of regulatory elements has been limited, as DNA-binding motifs are known for only 71 of the estimated 763 sequence-specific transcription factors (TFs). To address this problem, we performed protein binding microarray experiments on representatives of canonical TF families in C. elegans, obtaining motifs for 129 TFs. Additionally, we predict motifs for many TFs that have DNA-binding domains similar to those already characterized, increasing coverage of binding specificities to 292 C. elegans TFs (?40%). These data highlight the diversification of binding motifs for the nuclear hormone receptor and C2H2 zinc finger families and reveal unexpected diversity of motifs for T-box and DM families. Motif enrichment in promoters of functionally related genes is consistent with known biology and also identifies putative regulatory roles for unstudied TFs. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06967.001 PMID:25905672

  12. Serotonin Control of Thermotaxis Memory Behavior in Nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Yuling; Wang, Daoyong; Li, Chaojun; Wang, Dayong

    2013-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans is as an ideal model system for the study of mechanisms underlying learning and memory. In the present study, we employed C. elegans assay system of thermotaxis memory to investigate the possible role of serotonin neurotransmitter in memory control. Our data showed that both mutations of tph-1, bas-1, and cat-4 genes, required for serotonin synthesis, and mutations of mod-5 gene, encoding a serotonin reuptake transporter, resulted in deficits in thermotaxis memory behavior. Exogenous treatment with serotonin effectively recovered the deficits in thermotaxis memory of tph-1 and bas-1 mutants to the level of wild-type N2. Neuron-specific activity assay of TPH-1 suggests that serotonin might regulate the thermotaxis memory behavior by release from the ADF sensory neurons. Ablation of ADF sensory neurons by expressing a cell-death activator gene egl-1 decreased the thermotaxis memory, whereas activation of ADF neurons by expression of a constitutively active protein kinase C homologue (pkc-1(gf)) increased the thermotaxis memory and rescued the deficits in thermotaxis memory in tph-1 mutants. Moreover, serotonin released from the ADF sensory neurons might act through the G-protein-coupled serotonin receptors of SER-4 and SER-7 to regulate the thermotaxis memory behavior. Genetic analysis implies that serotonin might further target the insulin signaling pathway to regulate the thermotaxis memory behavior. Thus, our results suggest the possible crucial role of serotonin and ADF sensory neurons in thermotaxis memory control in C. elegans. PMID:24223727

  13. Non-dauer larval dispersal in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Simon C

    2009-05-15

    Species that exploit transient food patches must both effectively utilize such food sources and colonize new patches. The timing and rate of dispersal from existing patches and adaptations that aid dispersal are therefore crucial. Currently, no system exists in which dispersal has been investigated at both the ecological and genetic levels. The extensively studied model nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is potentially such a system. Dispersal between food patches in C. elegans has been found to be related to polymorphism in the npr-1 gene, which regulates the tendency of worms to aggregate on food. Here I show that this non-dauer larval dispersal is affected by various environmental variables and that variation is not fully explained by differences in aggregation behavior. Quantitative trait loci mapping identifies candidate genomic regions, separate to npr-1, which affect variation in dispersal between two isolates. These data suggest that the ecology of C. elegans is more complex than previously thought, but indicate that it is experimentally tractable. PMID:19288538

  14. Temporal dynamics and linkage disequilibrium in natural Caenorhabditis elegans populations.

    PubMed

    Barrière, Antoine; Félix, Marie-Anne

    2007-06-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans is a major laboratory model system yet a newcomer to the field of population genetics, and relatively little is known of its biology in the wild. Recent studies of natural populations at a single time point revealed strong spatial population structure and suggested that these populations may be very dynamic. We have therefore studied several natural C. elegans populations over time and genotyped them at polymorphic microsatellite loci. While some populations appear to be genetically stable over the course of observation, others seem to go extinct, with full replacement of multilocus genotypes upon regrowth. The frequency of heterozygotes indicates that outcrossing occurs at a mean frequency of 1.7% and is variable between populations. However, in genetically stable populations, linkage disequilibrium between different chromosomes can be maintained over several years at a level much higher than expected from the heterozygote frequency. C. elegans seems to follow metapopulation dynamics, and the maintenance of linkage disequilibrium despite a low yet significant level of outcrossing suggests that selection may act against the progeny of outcrossings. PMID:17409084

  15. Genotype-dependent lifespan effects in peptone deprived Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Stastna, Jana J.; Snoek, L. Basten; Kammenga, Jan E.; Harvey, Simon C.

    2015-01-01

    Dietary restriction appears to act as a general non-genetic mechanism that can robustly prolong lifespan. There have however been reports in many systems of cases where restricted food intake either shortens, or does not affect, lifespan. Here we analyze lifespan and the effect of food restriction via deprived peptone levels on lifespan in wild isolates and introgression lines (ILs) of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. These analyses identify genetic variation in lifespan, in the effect of this variation in diet on lifespan and also in the likelihood of maternal, matricidal, hatching. Importantly, in the wild isolates and the ILs, we identify genotypes in which peptone deprivation mediated dietary restriction reduces lifespan. We also identify, in recombinant inbred lines, a locus that affects maternal hatching, a phenotype closely linked to dietary restriction in C. elegans. These results indicate that peptone deprivation mediated dietary restriction affects lifespan in C. elegans in a genotype-dependent manner, reducing lifespan in some genotypes. This may operate by a mechanism similar to dietary restriction. PMID:26539794

  16. HES-Mediated Repression of Pten in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chou, Han Ting; Vazquez, Raymarie Gomez; Wang, Kun; Campbell, Richard; Milledge, Gaolin Zheng; Walthall, Walter W.; Johnson, Casonya M.

    2015-01-01

    The hairy/enhancer-of-split (HES) group of transcription factors controls embryonic development, often by acting downstream of the Notch signaling pathway; however, little is known about postembryonic roles of these proteins. In Caenorhabditis elegans, the six proteins that make up the REF-1 family are considered to be HES orthologs that act in both Notch-dependent and Notch-independent pathways to regulate embryonic events. To further our understanding of how the REF-1 family works to coordinate postembryonic cellular events, we performed a functional characterization of the REF-1 family member, HLH-25. We show that, after embryogenesis, hlh-25 expression persists throughout every developmental stage, including dauer, into adulthood. Like animals that carry loss-of-function alleles in genes required for normal cell-cycle progression, the phenotypes of hlh-25 animals include reduced brood size, unfertilized oocytes, and abnormal gonad morphology. Using gene expression microarray, we show that the HLH-25 transcriptional network correlates with the phenotypes of hlh-25 animals and that the C. elegans Pten ortholog, daf-18, is one major hub in the network. Finally, we show that HLH-25 regulates C. elegans lifespan and dauer recovery, which correlates with a role in the transcriptional repression of daf-18 activity. Collectively, these data provide the first genetic evidence that HLH-25 may be a functional ortholog of mammalian HES1, which represses PTEN activity in mice and human cells. PMID:26438299

  17. Mating Damages the Cuticle of C. elegans Hermaphrodites

    PubMed Central

    Woodruff, Gavin C.; Knauss, Christine M.; Maugel, Timothy K.; Haag, Eric S.

    2014-01-01

    Lifespan costs to reproduction are common across multiple species, and such costs could potentially arise through a number of mechanisms. In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, it has been suggested that part of the lifespan cost to hermaphrodites from mating results from physical damage owing to the act of copulation itself. Here, we examine whether mating damages the surface of the hermaphrodite cuticle via scanning electron microscopy. It is found that mated hermaphrodites suffered delamination of cuticle layers surrounding the vulva, and that the incidence of such damage depends on genetic background. Unmated hermaphrodites demonstrated almost no such damage, even when cultured in soil with potentially abrasive particles. Thus, a consequence of mating for C. elegans hermaphrodites is physical cuticle damage. These experiments did not assess the consequences of cuticle damage for lifespan, and the biological significance of this damage remains unclear. We further discuss our results within the context of recent studies linking the lifespan cost to mating in C. elegans hermaphrodites to male secretions. PMID:25105881

  18. DNA Methylation and Potential for Epigenetic Regulation in Pygospio elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kesäniemi, Jenni E.; Heikkinen, Liisa; Knott, K. Emily

    2016-01-01

    Transitions in developmental mode are common evolutionarily, but how and why they occur is not understood. Developmental mode describes larval phenotypes, including morphology, ecology and behavior of larvae, which typically are generalized across different species. The polychaete worm Pygospio elegans is one of few species polymorphic in developmental mode, with multiple larval phenotypes, providing a possibility to examine the potential mechanisms allowing transitions in developmental mode. We investigated the presence of DNA methylation in P. elegans, and, since maternal provisioning is a key factor determining eventual larval phenotype, we compared patterns of DNA methylation in females during oogenesis in this species. We demonstrate that intragenic CpG site DNA methylation and many relevant genes necessary for DNA methylation occur in P. elegans. Methylation-sensitive AFLP analysis showed that gravid females with offspring differing in larval developmental mode have significantly different methylation profiles and that the females with benthic larvae and non-reproductive females from the same location also differ in their epigenetic profiles. Analysis of CpG sites in transcriptome data supported our findings of DNA methylation in this species and showed that CpG observed/expected ratios differ among females gravid with embryos destined to different developmental modes. The differences in CpG site DNA methylation patterns seen among the samples suggest a potential for epigenetic regulation of gene expression (through DNA methylation) in this species. PMID:27008314

  19. Exposure to Mitochondrial Genotoxins and Dopaminergic Neurodegeneration in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Bodhicharla, Rakesh K.; McKeever, Madeline G.; Arrant, Andrew E.; Margillo, Kathleen M.; Ryde, Ian T.; Cyr, Derek D.; Kosmaczewski, Sara G.; Hammarlund, Marc; Meyer, Joel N.

    2014-01-01

    Neurodegeneration has been correlated with mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) damage and exposure to environmental toxins, but causation is unclear. We investigated the ability of several known environmental genotoxins and neurotoxins to cause mtDNA damage, mtDNA depletion, and neurodegeneration in Caenorhabditis elegans. We found that paraquat, cadmium chloride and aflatoxin B1 caused more mitochondrial than nuclear DNA damage, and paraquat and aflatoxin B1 also caused dopaminergic neurodegeneration. 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) caused similar levels of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA damage. To further test whether the neurodegeneration could be attributed to the observed mtDNA damage, C. elegans were exposed to repeated low-dose ultraviolet C radiation (UVC) that resulted in persistent mtDNA damage; this exposure also resulted in dopaminergic neurodegeneration. Damage to GABAergic neurons and pharyngeal muscle cells was not detected. We also found that fasting at the first larval stage was protective in dopaminergic neurons against 6-OHDA-induced neurodegeneration. Finally, we found that dopaminergic neurons in C. elegans are capable of regeneration after laser surgery. Our findings are consistent with a causal role for mitochondrial DNA damage in neurodegeneration, but also support non mtDNA-mediated mechanisms. PMID:25486066

  20. Mechanosensitive unpaired innexin channels in C. elegans touch neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sangaletti, Rachele; Dahl, Gerhard

    2014-01-01

    Invertebrate innexin proteins share sequence homology with vertebrate pannexins and general membrane topology with both pannexins and connexins. While connexins form gap junctions that mediate intercellular communication, pannexins are thought to function exclusively as plasma membrane channels permeable to both ions and small molecules. Undoubtedly, certain innexins function as gap junction proteins. However, due to sequence similarity to pannexins, it was postulated that innexins also function as plasma membrane channels. Indeed, some of the leech innexins were found to mediate ATP release as unpaired membrane channels with shared pharmacology to pannexin channels. We show here that Caenorhabditis elegans touch-sensing neurons express a mechanically gated innexin channel with a conductance of ?1 nS and voltage-dependent and K+-selective subconductance state. We also show that C. elegans touch neurons take up ethidium bromide through a mechanism that is activated and blocked by innexin activating stimuli and inhibitors, respectively. Finally, we present evidence that touch neurons' innexins are required for cell death induced by chemical ischemia. Our work demonstrates that innexins function as plasma membrane channels in native C. elegans neurons, where they may play a role in pathological cell death. PMID:25252948

  1. Biotransformation of chlorpromazine and methdilazine by Cunninghamella elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, D; Freeman, J P; Sutherland, J B; Walker, A E; Yang, Y; Cerniglia, C E

    1996-01-01

    When tested as a microbial model for mammalian drug metabolism, the filamentous fungus Cunninghamella elegans metabolized chlorpromazine and methdilazine within 72 h. The metabolites were extracted by chloroform, separated by high-performance liquid chromatography, and characterized by proton nuclear magnetic resonance, mass, and UV spectroscopic analyses. The major metabolites of chlorpromazine were chlorpromazine sulfoxide (36%), N-desmethylchlorpromazine (11%), N-desmethyl-7-hydroxychlorpromazine (6%), 7-hydroxychlorpromazine sulfoxide (36%), N-hydroxychlorpromazine (11%), 7-hydroxychlorpromazine sulfoxide (5%), and chlorpromazine N-oxide (2%), all of which have been found in animal studies. The major metabolites of methdilazine were 3-hydroxymethdilazine (3%). (18)O(2) labeling experiments indicated that the oxygen atoms in methdilazine sulfoxide, methdilazine N-oxide, and 3-hydroxymethdilazine were all derived from molecular oxygen. The production of methdilazine sulfoxide and 3-hydroxymethdilazine was inhibited by the cytochrome P-450 inhibitors metyrapone and proadifen. An enzyme activity for the sulfoxidation of methdilazine was found in microsomal preparations of C. elegans. These experiments suggest that the sulfoxidation and hydroxylation of methdilazine and chlorpromazine by C. elegans are catalyzed by cytochrome P-450. PMID:8975609

  2. Caenorhabditis elegans is a useful model for anthelmintic discovery.

    PubMed

    Burns, Andrew R; Luciani, Genna M; Musso, Gabriel; Bagg, Rachel; Yeo, May; Zhang, Yuqian; Rajendran, Luckshika; Glavin, John; Hunter, Robert; Redman, Elizabeth; Stasiuk, Susan; Schertzberg, Michael; Angus McQuibban, G; Caffrey, Conor R; Cutler, Sean R; Tyers, Mike; Giaever, Guri; Nislow, Corey; Fraser, Andy G; MacRae, Calum A; Gilleard, John; Roy, Peter J

    2015-01-01

    Parasitic nematodes infect one quarter of the world's population and impact all humans through widespread infection of crops and livestock. Resistance to current anthelmintics has prompted the search for new drugs. Traditional screens that rely on parasitic worms are costly and labour intensive and target-based approaches have failed to yield novel anthelmintics. Here, we present our screen of 67,012 compounds to identify those that kill the non-parasitic nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We then rescreen our hits in two parasitic nematode species and two vertebrate models (HEK293 cells and zebrafish), and identify 30 structurally distinct anthelmintic lead molecules. Genetic screens of 19 million C. elegans mutants reveal those nematicides for which the generation of resistance is and is not likely. We identify the target of one lead with nematode specificity and nanomolar potency as complex II of the electron transport chain. This work establishes C. elegans as an effective and cost-efficient model system for anthelmintic discovery. PMID:26108372

  3. RNAi-Mediated Inactivation of Autophagy Genes in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Palmisano, Nicholas J; Meléndez, Alicia

    2016-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) is a process that results in the sequence-specific silencing of endogenous mRNA through the introduction of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, RNA inactivation can be used at any specific developmental stage or during adulthood to inhibit a given target gene. Investigators can take advantage of the fact that, in C. elegans, RNAi is unusual in that it is systemic, meaning that dsRNA can spread throughout the animal and can affect virtually all tissues except neurons. Here, we describe a protocol for the most common method to achieve RNAi in C. elegans, which is to feed them bacteria that express dsRNA complementary to a specific target gene. This method has various advantages, including the availability of libraries that essentially cover the whole genome, the ability to treat animals at any developmental stage, and that it is relatively cost effective. We also discuss how RNAi specific to autophagy genes has proven to be an excellent method to study the role of these genes in autophagy, as well as other cellular and developmental processes, while also highlighting the caveats that must be applied. PMID:26832686

  4. Caenorhabditis elegans, a Biological Model for Research in Toxicology.

    PubMed

    Tejeda-Benitez, Lesly; Olivero-Verbel, Jesus

    2016-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans is a nematode widely used as a toxicological model. The transparency of its body, short lifespan, ability to self-fertilize and ease of culture are advantages that make it ideal as a model in toxicology. Due to the fact that some of its biochemical pathways are similar to those of humans, it has been employed in research in several fields. Its use in environmental toxicological assessments allows the determination of multiple endpoints such as lethality, growth, reproduction, and locomotion. Other endpoints use reporter genes, such as GFP, driven by regulatory sequences from genes modulated by different toxicity pathways, such as heat shock responses, oxidative stress, xenobiotic metabolism, and metallothioneins production, among others. C. elegans has allowed the evaluation of neurotoxic effects for heavy metals and pesticides, among those more frequently studied, as the nematode has a very well defined nervous system. More recently, nanoparticles are emergent pollutants whose toxicity can be explored using this nematode. Overall, almost every type of known toxicant has been tested with this animal model. In the near future, the available knowledge on the life cycle of C. elegans should allow more studies on reproduction and transgenerational toxicity for newly developed chemicals and materials, as a powerful tool to protect human health. PMID:26613986

  5. SUT-2 potentiates tau-induced neurotoxicity in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Guthrie, Chris R.; Schellenberg, Gerard D.; Kraemer, Brian C.

    2009-01-01

    Expression of human tau in Caenorhabditis elegans neurons causes accumulation of aggregated tau leading to neurodegeneration and uncoordinated movement. We used this model of human tauopathy disorders to screen for genes required for tau neurotoxicity. Recessive loss-of-function mutations in the sut-2 locus suppress the Unc phenotype, tau aggregation and neurodegenerative changes caused by human tau. We cloned the sut-2 gene and found it encodes a novel sub-type of CCCH zinc finger protein conserved across animal phyla. SUT-2 shares significant identity with the mammalian SUT-2 (MSUT-2). To identify SUT-2 interacting proteins, we conducted a yeast two hybrid screen and found SUT-2 binds to ZYG-12, the sole C. elegans HOOK protein family member. Likewise, SUT-2 binds ZYG-12 in in vitro protein binding assays. Furthermore, loss of ZYG-12 leads to a marked upregulation of SUT-2 protein supporting the connection between SUT-2 and ZYG-12. The human genome encodes three homologs of ZYG-12: HOOK1, HOOK2 and HOOK3. Of these, the human ortholog of SUT-2 (MSUT-2) binds only to HOOK2 suggesting the interaction between SUT-2 and HOOK family proteins is conserved across animal phyla. The identification of sut-2 as a gene required for tau neurotoxicity in C. elegans may suggest new neuroprotective strategies capable of arresting tau pathogenesis in tauopathy disorders. PMID:19273536

  6. High-throughput gene mapping in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Swan, Kathryn A; Curtis, Damian E; McKusick, Kathleen B; Voinov, Alexander V; Mapa, Felipa A; Cancilla, Michael R

    2002-07-01

    Positional cloning of mutations in model genetic systems is a powerful method for the identification of targets of medical and agricultural importance. To facilitate the high-throughput mapping of mutations in Caenorhabditis elegans, we have identified a further 9602 putative new single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) between two C. elegans strains, Bristol N2 and the Hawaiian mapping strain CB4856, by sequencing inserts from a CB4856 genomic DNA library and using an informatics pipeline to compare sequences with the canonical N2 genomic sequence. When combined with data from other laboratories, our marker set of 17,189 SNPs provides even coverage of the complete worm genome. To date, we have confirmed >1099 evenly spaced SNPs (one every 91 +/- 56 kb) across the six chromosomes and validated the utility of our SNP marker set and new fluorescence polarization-based genotyping methods for systematic and high-throughput identification of genes in C. elegans by cloning several proprietary genes. We illustrate our approach by recombination mapping and confirmation of the mutation in the cloned gene, dpy-18. PMID:12097347

  7. HES-Mediated Repression of Pten in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Chou, Han Ting; Vazquez, Raymarie Gomez; Wang, Kun; Campbell, Richard; Milledge, Gaolin Zheng; Walthall, Walter W; Johnson, Casonya M

    2015-01-01

    The hairy/enhancer-of-split (HES) group of transcription factors controls embryonic development, often by acting downstream of the Notch signaling pathway; however, little is known about postembryonic roles of these proteins. In Caenorhabditis elegans, the six proteins that make up the REF-1 family are considered to be HES orthologs that act in both Notch-dependent and Notch-independent pathways to regulate embryonic events. To further our understanding of how the REF-1 family works to coordinate postembryonic cellular events, we performed a functional characterization of the REF-1 family member, HLH-25. We show that, after embryogenesis, hlh-25 expression persists throughout every developmental stage, including dauer, into adulthood. Like animals that carry loss-of-function alleles in genes required for normal cell-cycle progression, the phenotypes of hlh-25 animals include reduced brood size, unfertilized oocytes, and abnormal gonad morphology. Using gene expression microarray, we show that the HLH-25 transcriptional network correlates with the phenotypes of hlh-25 animals and that the C. elegans Pten ortholog, daf-18, is one major hub in the network. Finally, we show that HLH-25 regulates C. elegans lifespan and dauer recovery, which correlates with a role in the transcriptional repression of daf-18 activity. Collectively, these data provide the first genetic evidence that HLH-25 may be a functional ortholog of mammalian HES1, which represses PTEN activity in mice and human cells. PMID:26438299

  8. Methods to Assess Subcellular Compartments of Muscle in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Gaffney, Christopher J.; Bass, Joseph J.; Barratt, Thomas F.; Szewczyk, Nathaniel J.

    2014-01-01

    Muscle is a dynamic tissue that responds to changes in nutrition, exercise, and disease state. The loss of muscle mass and function with disease and age are significant public health burdens. We currently understand little about the genetic regulation of muscle health with disease or age. The nematode C. elegans is an established model for understanding the genomic regulation of biological processes of interest. This worm’s body wall muscles display a large degree of homology with the muscles of higher metazoan species. Since C. elegans is a transparent organism, the localization of GFP to mitochondria and sarcomeres allows visualization of these structures in vivo. Similarly, feeding animals cationic dyes, which accumulate based on the existence of a mitochondrial membrane potential, allows the assessment of mitochondrial function in vivo. These methods, as well as assessment of muscle protein homeostasis, are combined with assessment of whole animal muscle function, in the form of movement assays, to allow correlation of sub-cellular defects with functional measures of muscle performance. Thus, C. elegans provides a powerful platform with which to assess the impact of mutations, gene knockdown, and/or chemical compounds upon muscle structure and function. Lastly, as GFP, cationic dyes, and movement assays are assessed non-invasively, prospective studies of muscle structure and function can be conducted across the whole life course and this at present cannot be easily investigated in vivo in any other organism. PMID:25489753

  9. Genome Editing in C. elegans and Other Nematode Species.

    PubMed

    Sugi, Takuma

    2016-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans, a 1 mm long free-living nematode, is a popular model animal that has been widely utilized for genetic investigations of various biological processes. Characteristic features that make C. elegans a powerful model of choice for eukaryotic genetic studies include its rapid life cycle (development from egg to adult in 3.5 days at 20 °C), well-annotated genome, simple morphology (comprising only 959 somatic cells in the hermaphrodite), and transparency (which facilitates non-invasive fluorescence observations). However, early approaches to introducing mutations in the C. elegans genome, such as chemical mutagenesis and imprecise excision of transposons, have required large-scale mutagenesis screens. To avoid this laborious and time-consuming procedure, genome editing technologies have been increasingly used in nematodes including C. briggsae and Pristionchus pacificus, thereby facilitating their genetic analyses. Here, I review the recent progress in genome editing technologies using zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs), transcriptional activator-like nucleases (TALENs), and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 in nematodes and offer perspectives on their use in the future. PMID:26927083

  10. Differential expression pattern of UBX family genes in Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Yamauchi, Seiji; Sasagawa, Yohei; Ogura, Teru . E-mail: ogura@gpo.kumamoto-u.ac.jp; Yamanaka, Kunitoshi . E-mail: yamanaka@gpo.kumamoto-u.ac.jp

    2007-06-29

    UBX (ubiquitin regulatory X)-containing proteins belong to an evolutionary conserved protein family and determine the specificity of p97/VCP/Cdc48p function by binding as its adaptors. Caenorhabditis elegans was found to possess six UBX-containing proteins, named UBXN-1 to -6. However, no general or specific function of them has been revealed. During the course of understanding not only their function but also specified function of p97, we investigated spatial and temporal expression patterns of six ubxn genes in this study. Transcript analyses showed that the expression pattern of each ubxn gene was different throughout worm's development and may show potential developmental dynamics in their function, especially ubxn-5 was expressed specifically in the spermatogenic germline, suggesting a crucial role in spermatogenesis. In addition, as ubxn-4 expression was induced by ER stress, it would function as an ERAD factor in C. elegans. In vivo expression analysis by using GFP translational fusion constructs revealed that six ubxn genes show distinct expression patterns. These results altogether demonstrate that the expression of all six ubxn genes of C. elegans is differently regulated.

  11. Distribution and Transport of Cholesterol in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Matyash, Vitali; Geier, Christian; Henske, Annemarie; Mukherjee, Sushmita; Hirsh, David; Thiele, Christoph; Grant, Barth; Maxfield, Frederick R.; Kurzchalia, Teymuras V.

    2001-01-01

    Cholesterol transport is an essential process in all multicellular organisms. In this study we applied two recently developed approaches to investigate the distribution and molecular mechanisms of cholesterol transport in Caenorhabditis elegans. The distribution of cholesterol in living worms was studied by imaging its fluorescent analog, dehydroergosterol, which we applied to the animals by feeding. Dehydroergosterol accumulates primarily in the pharynx, nerve ring, excretory gland cell, and gut of L1–L3 larvae. Later, the bulk of dehydroergosterol accumulates in oocytes and spermatozoa. Males display exceptionally strong labeling of spermatids, which suggests a possible role for cholesterol in sperm development. In a complementary approach, we used a photoactivatable cholesterol analog to identify cholesterol-binding proteins in C. elegans. Three major and several minor proteins were found specifically cross-linked to photocholesterol after UV irradiation. The major proteins were identified as vitellogenins. rme-2 mutants, which lack the vitellogenin receptor, fail to accumulate dehydroergosterol in oocytes and embryos and instead accumulate dehydroergosterol in the body cavity along with vitellogenin. Thus, uptake of cholesterol by C. elegans oocytes occurs via an endocytotic pathway involving yolk proteins. The pathway is a likely evolutionary ancestor of mammalian cholesterol transport. PMID:11408580

  12. Cell-specific proteomic analysis in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Yuet, Kai P; Doma, Meenakshi K; Ngo, John T; Sweredoski, Michael J; Graham, Robert L J; Moradian, Annie; Hess, Sonja; Schuman, Erin M; Sternberg, Paul W; Tirrell, David A

    2015-03-01

    Proteomic analysis of rare cells in heterogeneous environments presents difficult challenges. Systematic methods are needed to enrich, identify, and quantify proteins expressed in specific cells in complex biological systems including multicellular plants and animals. Here, we have engineered a Caenorhabditis elegans phenylalanyl-tRNA synthetase capable of tagging proteins with the reactive noncanonical amino acid p-azido-L-phenylalanine. We achieved spatiotemporal selectivity in the labeling of C. elegans proteins by controlling expression of the mutant synthetase using cell-selective (body wall muscles, intestinal epithelial cells, neurons, and pharyngeal muscle) or state-selective (heat-shock) promoters in several transgenic lines. Tagged proteins are distinguished from the rest of the protein pool through bioorthogonal conjugation of the azide side chain to probes that permit visualization and isolation of labeled proteins. By coupling our methodology with stable-isotope labeling of amino acids in cell culture (SILAC), we successfully profiled proteins expressed in pharyngeal muscle cells, and in the process, identified proteins not previously known to be expressed in these cells. Our results show that tagging proteins with spatiotemporal selectivity can be achieved in C. elegans and illustrate a convenient and effective approach for unbiased discovery of proteins expressed in targeted subsets of cells. PMID:25691744

  13. Biomechanical analysis of gait adaptation in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Fang-Yen, Christopher; Wyart, Matthieu; Xie, Julie; Kawai, Risa; Kodger, Tom; Chen, Sway; Wen, Quan; Samuel, Aravinthan D T

    2010-11-23

    To navigate different environments, an animal must be able to adapt its locomotory gait to its physical surroundings. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, between swimming in water and crawling on surfaces, adapts its locomotory gait to surroundings that impose approximately 10,000-fold differences in mechanical resistance. Here we investigate this feat by studying the undulatory movements of C. elegans in Newtonian fluids spanning nearly five orders of magnitude in viscosity. In these fluids, the worm undulatory gait varies continuously with changes in external load: As load increases, both wavelength and frequency of undulation decrease. We also quantify the internal viscoelastic properties of the worm's body and their role in locomotory dynamics. We incorporate muscle activity, internal load, and external load into a biomechanical model of locomotion and show that (i) muscle power is nearly constant across changes in locomotory gait, and (ii) the onset of gait adaptation occurs as external load becomes comparable to internal load. During the swimming gait, which is evoked by small external loads, muscle power is primarily devoted to bending the worm's elastic body. During the crawling gait, evoked by large external loads, comparable muscle power is used to drive the external load and the elastic body. Our results suggest that C. elegans locomotory gait continuously adapts to external mechanical load in order to maintain propulsive thrust. PMID:21048086

  14. RNAi screening to identify postembryonic phenotypes in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Beifuss, Katherine K; Gumienny, Tina L

    2012-01-01

    C. elegans has proven to be a valuable model system for the discovery and functional characterization of many genes and gene pathways. More sophisticated tools and resources for studies in this system are facilitating continued discovery of genes with more subtle phenotypes or roles. Here we present a generalized protocol we adapted for identifying C. elegans genes with postembryonic phenotypes of interest using RNAi. This procedure is easily modified to assay the phenotype of choice, whether by light or fluorescence optics on a dissecting or compound microscope. This screening protocol capitalizes on the physical assets of the organism and molecular tools the C. elegans research community has produced. As an example, we demonstrate the use of an integrated transgene that expresses a fluorescent product in an RNAi screen to identify genes required for the normal localization of this product in late stage larvae and adults. First, we used a commercially available genomic RNAi library with full-length cDNA inserts. This library facilitates the rapid identification of multiple candidates by RNAi reduction of the candidate gene product. Second, we generated an integrated transgene that expresses our fluorecently tagged protein of interest in an RNAi-sensitive background. Third, by exposing hatched animals to RNAi, this screen permits identification of gene products that have a vital embryonic role that would otherwise mask a post-embryonic role in regulating the protein of interest. Lastly, this screen uses a compound microscope equipped for single cell resolution. PMID:22353760

  15. hecd-1 Modulates Notch Activity in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yunting; Greenwald, Iva

    2014-01-01

    Notch is a receptor that mediates cell–cell interactions that specify binary cell fate decisions in development and tissue homeostasis. Inappropriate Notch signaling is associated with cancer, and mutations in Notch pathway components have been associated with developmental diseases and syndromes. In Caenorhabditis elegans, suppressors of phenotypes associated with constitutively active LIN-12/Notch have identified many conserved core components and direct or indirect modulators. Here, we molecularly identify sel(ar584), originally isolated as a suppressor of a constitutively active allele of lin-12. We show that sel(ar584) is an allele of hecd-1, the ortholog of human HECDT1, a ubiquitin ligase that has been implicated in several different mammalian developmental events. We studied interactions of hecd-1 with lin-12 in the somatic gonad and with the other C. elegans Notch gene, glp-1, in the germ line. We found that hecd-1 acts as a positive modulator of lin-12/Notch activity in a somatic gonad context—the original basis for its isolation—but acts autonomously as a negative modulator of glp-1/Notch activity in the germ line. As the yeast ortholog of HECD-1, Ufd4p, has been shown to function in quality control, and C. elegans HECD-1 has been shown to affect mitochondrial maintenance, we propose that the different genetic interactions between hecd-1 and Notch genes we observed in different cell contexts may reflect differences in quality control regulatory mechanisms or in cellular metabolism. PMID:25552605

  16. A probabilistic model of 3? end formation in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Hajarnavis, Ashwin; Korf, Ian; Durbin, Richard

    2004-01-01

    The 3? ends of mRNAs terminate with a poly(A) tail. This post-transcriptional modification is directed by sequence features present in the 3?-untranslated region (3?-UTR). We have undertaken a computational analysis of 3? end formation in Caenorhabditis elegans. By aligning cDNAs that diverge from genomic sequence at the poly(A) tract, we accurately identified a large set of true cleavage sites. When there are many transcripts aligned to a particular locus, local variation of the cleavage site over a span of a few bases is frequently observed. We find that in addition to the well-known AAUAAA motif there are several regions with distinct nucleotide compositional biases. We propose a generalized hidden Markov model that describes sequence features in C.elegans 3?-UTRs. We find that a computer program employing this model accurately predicts experimentally observed 3? ends even when there are multiple AAUAAA motifs and multiple cleavage sites. We have made available a complete set of polyadenylation site predictions for the C.elegans genome, including a subset of 6570 supported by aligned transcripts. PMID:15247332

  17. Antisense long noncoding RNAs regulate var gene activation in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    Amit-Avraham, Inbar; Pozner, Guy; Eshar, Shiri; Fastman, Yair; Kolevzon, Netanel; Yavin, Eylon; Dzikowski, Ron

    2015-01-01

    The virulence of Plasmodium falciparum, the causative agent of the deadliest form of human malaria, is attributed to its ability to evade human immunity through antigenic variation. These parasites alternate between expression of variable antigens, encoded by members of a multicopy gene family named var. Immune evasion through antigenic variation depends on tight regulation of var gene expression, ensuring that only a single var gene is expressed at a time while the rest of the family is maintained transcriptionally silent. Understanding how a single gene is chosen for activation is critical for understanding mutually exclusive expression but remains a mystery. Here, we show that antisense long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) initiating from var introns are associated with the single active var gene at the time in the cell cycle when the single var upstream promoter is active. We demonstrate that these antisense transcripts are incorporated into chromatin, and that expression of these antisense lncRNAs in trans triggers activation of a silent var gene in a sequence- and dose-dependent manner. On the other hand, interference with these lncRNAs using complement peptide nucleic acid molecules down-regulated the active var gene, erased the epigenetic memory, and induced expression switching. Altogether, our data provide evidence that these antisense lncRNAs play a key role in regulating var gene activation and mutually exclusive expression. PMID:25691743

  18. Automated Quantification of Synaptic Fluorescence in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sturt, Brianne L.; Bamber, Bruce A.

    2012-01-01

    Synapse strength refers to the amplitude of postsynaptic responses to presynaptic neurotransmitter release events, and has a major impact on overall neural circuit function. Synapse strength critically depends on the abundance of neurotransmitter receptors clustered at synaptic sites on the postsynaptic membrane. Receptor levels are established developmentally, and can be altered by receptor trafficking between surface-localized, subsynaptic, and intracellular pools, representing important mechanisms of synaptic plasticity and neuromodulation. Rigorous methods to quantify synaptically-localized neurotransmitter receptor abundance are essential to study synaptic development and plasticity. Fluorescence microscopy is an optimal approach because it preserves spatial information, distinguishing synaptic from non-synaptic pools, and discriminating among receptor populations localized to different types of synapses. The genetic model organism Caenorhabditis elegans is particularly well suited for these studies due to the small size and relative simplicity of its nervous system, its transparency, and the availability of powerful genetic techniques, allowing examination of native synapses in intact animals. Here we present a method for quantifying fluorescently-labeled synaptic neurotransmitter receptors in C. elegans. Its key feature is the automated identification and analysis of individual synapses in three dimensions in multi-plane confocal microscope output files, tabulating position, volume, fluorescence intensity, and total fluorescence for each synapse. This approach has two principal advantages over manual analysis of z-plane projections of confocal data. First, because every plane of the confocal data set is included, no data are lost through z-plane projection, typically based on pixel intensity averages or maxima. Second, identification of synapses is automated, but can be inspected by the experimenter as the data analysis proceeds, allowing fast and accurate extraction of data from large numbers of synapses. Hundreds to thousands of synapses per sample can easily be obtained, producing large data sets to maximize statistical power. Considerations for preparing C. elegans for analysis, and performing confocal imaging to minimize variability between animals within treatment groups are also discussed. Although developed to analyze C. elegans postsynaptic receptors, this method is generally useful for any type of synaptically-localized protein, or indeed, any fluorescence signal that is localized to discrete clusters, puncta, or organelles. The procedure is performed in three steps: 1) preparation of samples, 2) confocal imaging, and 3) image analysis. Steps 1 and 2 are specific to C. elegans, while step 3 is generally applicable to any punctate fluorescence signal in confocal micrographs. PMID:22907390

  19. Fish oil changes the lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans via lipid peroxidation

    PubMed Central

    Sugawara, Soko; Honma, Taro; Ito, Junya; Kijima, Ryo; Tsuduki, Tsuyoshi

    2013-01-01

    Recently, we administered fish oil containing eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) to senescence-accelerated mice P8 (SAMP8), in order to investigate the effects on lifespan. Surprisingly, the lifespan of SAMP8 that were fed fish oil was shortened significantly, through a mechanism that likely involved lipid peroxidation. In this study, we investigated this phenomenon in further detail. To examine whether this phenomenon occurs only in SAMP8, we investigated the effect of fish oil on the lifespan of another organism species, Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). C. elegans fed fish oil were cultured and the lifespan monitored. As a consequence of the provision of large amounts of fish oil the lifespan of C. elegans was shortened significantly, whereas an appropriate amount of fish oil extended their lifespan significantly. Lipid peroxide levels in C. elegans that were fed fish oil increased significantly in a dose-dependent manner. However, lipid peroxide levels in C. elegans were inhibited by the addition of fish oil and an antioxidant, ?-tocopherol, and completely abrogated the changes in the lifespan. To further confirm whether the oxidation of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid in fish oil would change the lifespan of C. elegans, the effect of oxidized DHA was examined. Large amounts of oxidized DHA were found to shorten their lifespan significantly. Thus, fish oil changes the lifespan of C. elegans through lipid peroxidation. PMID:23526170

  20. FMRFamide related peptide ligands activate the Caenorhabditis elegans orphan GPCR Y59H11AL.1

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are ancient molecules that sense environmental and physiological signals. Currently, the majority of the predicted Caenorhabditis elegans GPCRs are orphan. Here, we describe the characterization of such an orphan C. elegans GPCR, which is categorized in the tachyk...

  1. On-Demand Isolation and Manipulation of C. elegans by In Vitro Maskless Photopatterning.

    PubMed

    Oliver, C Ryan; Gourgou, Eleni; Bazopoulou, Daphne; Chronis, Nikos; Hart, A John

    2016-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is a model organism for understanding aging and studying animal behavior. Microfluidic assay techniques have brought widespread advances in C. elegans research; however, traditional microfluidic assays such as those based on soft lithography require time-consuming design and fabrication cycles and offer limited flexibility in changing the geometric environment during experimentation. We present a technique for maskless photopatterning of a biocompatible hydrogel on an NGM (Agar) substrate, enabling dynamic manipulation of the C. elegans culture environment in vitro. Maskless photopatterning is performed using a projector-based microscope system largely built from off-the-shelf components. We demonstrate the capabilities of this technique by building micropillar arrays during C. elegans observation, by fabricating free-floating mechanisms that can be actuated by C. elegans motion, by using freehand drawing to isolate individual C. elegans in real time, and by patterning arrays of mazes for isolation and fitness testing of C. elegans populations. In vitro photopatterning enables rapid and flexible design of experiment geometry as well as real-time interaction between the researcher and the assay such as by sequential isolation of individual organisms. Future adoption of image analysis and machine learning techniques could be used to acquire large datasets and automatically adapt the assay geometry. PMID:26730604

  2. On-Demand Isolation and Manipulation of C. elegans by In Vitro Maskless Photopatterning

    PubMed Central

    Oliver, C. Ryan; Gourgou, Eleni; Bazopoulou, Daphne; Chronis, Nikos; Hart, A. John

    2016-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is a model organism for understanding aging and studying animal behavior. Microfluidic assay techniques have brought widespread advances in C. elegans research; however, traditional microfluidic assays such as those based on soft lithography require time-consuming design and fabrication cycles and offer limited flexibility in changing the geometric environment during experimentation. We present a technique for maskless photopatterning of a biocompatible hydrogel on an NGM (Agar) substrate, enabling dynamic manipulation of the C. elegans culture environment in vitro. Maskless photopatterning is performed using a projector-based microscope system largely built from off-the-shelf components. We demonstrate the capabilities of this technique by building micropillar arrays during C. elegans observation, by fabricating free-floating mechanisms that can be actuated by C. elegans motion, by using freehand drawing to isolate individual C. elegans in real time, and by patterning arrays of mazes for isolation and fitness testing of C. elegans populations. In vitro photopatterning enables rapid and flexible design of experiment geometry as well as real-time interaction between the researcher and the assay such as by sequential isolation of individual organisms. Future adoption of image analysis and machine learning techniques could be used to acquire large datasets and automatically adapt the assay geometry. PMID:26730604

  3. Aversive Olfactory Learning and Associative Long-Term Memory in "Caenorhabditis elegans"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Amano, Hisayuki; Maruyama, Ichiro N.

    2011-01-01

    The nematode "Caenorhabditis elegans" ("C. elegans") adult hermaphrodite has 302 invariant neurons and is suited for cellular and molecular studies on complex behaviors including learning and memory. Here, we have developed protocols for classical conditioning of worms with 1-propanol, as a conditioned stimulus (CS), and hydrochloride (HCl) (pH…

  4. Mapping a Mutation in "Caenorhabditis elegans" Using a Polymerase Chain Reaction-Based Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Myers, Edith M.

    2014-01-01

    Many single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been identified within the "Caenorhabditis elegans" genome. SNPs present in the genomes of two isogenic "C. elegans" strains have been routinely used as a tool in forward genetics to map a mutation to a particular chromosome. This article describes a laboratory exercise in which…

  5. A potential biochemical mechanism underlying the influence of sterol deprivation stress on Caenorhabditis elegans longevity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To investigate the biochemical mechanism for sterol-mediated alteration in aging in Caenorhabditis elegans, we established sterol depletion conditions by treating worms with azacoprostane, which reduced mean lifespan of adult C. elegans by 35%. Proteomic analyses of egg proteins from treated and un...

  6. Mapping a Mutation in "Caenorhabditis elegans" Using a Polymerase Chain Reaction-Based Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Myers, Edith M.

    2014-01-01

    Many single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been identified within the "Caenorhabditis elegans" genome. SNPs present in the genomes of two isogenic "C. elegans" strains have been routinely used as a tool in forward genetics to map a mutation to a particular chromosome. This article describes a laboratory exercise in which…

  7. Neuronal regulation of ascaroside response during mate response behavior in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Small-molecule signaling plays an important role in the biology of Caenorhabditis elegans. We have previously shown that ascarosides, glycosides of the dideoxysugar ascarylose regulate both development and behavior in C. elegans The mating signal consists of a synergistic blend of three dauer-induc...

  8. Using RNAi in C. "elegans" to Demonstrate Gene Knockdown Phenotypes in the Undergraduate Biology Lab Setting

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roy, Nicole M.

    2013-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) is a powerful technology used to knock down genes in basic research and medicine. In 2006 RNAi technology using "Caenorhabditis elegans" ("C. elegans") was awarded the Nobel Prize in medicine and thus students graduating in the biological sciences should have experience with this technology. However,…

  9. Influence of Silicon on Resistance of Zinnia Elegans to Myzus Persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Studies were conducted to examine the effect of treating Zinnia elegans Jacq. with soluble silicon on the performance of the green peach aphid, Myzus persicae (Sulzer). Zinnia elegans plants were irrigated every 2 days throughout the duration of the experiment with a nutrient solution amended with ...

  10. A Chemosensory Adaptation Module for the Physiology Laboratory from Student-Directed "C. elegans" Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lindblom, Tim

    2006-01-01

    The model organism, "Caenorhabditis elegans," in addition to being well suited to genetics and cell biology teaching applications, can also be useful in the physiology laboratory. In this article, the author describes how students in a junior level college Comparative Physiology course have made use of "C. elegans" in semester-long,…

  11. Aversive Olfactory Learning and Associative Long-Term Memory in "Caenorhabditis elegans"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Amano, Hisayuki; Maruyama, Ichiro N.

    2011-01-01

    The nematode "Caenorhabditis elegans" ("C. elegans") adult hermaphrodite has 302 invariant neurons and is suited for cellular and molecular studies on complex behaviors including learning and memory. Here, we have developed protocols for classical conditioning of worms with 1-propanol, as a conditioned stimulus (CS), and hydrochloride (HCl) (pH…

  12. Selenite Enhances Immune Response against Pseudomonas aeruginosa PA14 via SKN-1 in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Chi-Wei; Wei, Chia-Cheng; Liao, Vivian Hsiu-Chuan

    2014-01-01

    Background Selenium (Se) is an important nutrient that carries out many biological processes including maintaining optimal immune function. Here, inorganic selenite (Se(IV)) was evaluated for its pathogen resistance and potential-associated factors in Caenorhabditis elegans. The immune effects of Se(IV) were investigated by examining the responses of C. elegans to Pseudomonas aerugonisa PA14 strain. Principal Findings Se(IV)-treated C. elegans showed increased survival under PA14 infection compared with untreated controls. The significant pathogen resistance of Se(IV) on C. elegans might not be attributed to the effects of Se(IV) on PA14 as Se(IV) showed no effect on bacterial quorum-sensing and virulence factors of PA14. This study showed that Se(IV) enhanced the expression of a gene pivotal for the innate immunity in C. elegans. The study found that the pathogen-resistant phenotypes contributed by Se(IV) was absent from the skn-1 mutant worms. Moreover, Se(IV) influenced the subcellular distribution of SKN-1/Nrf in C. elegans upon PA14 infection. Furthermore, Se(IV) increased mRNA levels of SKN-1 target genes (gst-4 and gcs-1). Conclusions This study found evidence of Se(IV) protecting C. elegans against P. aeruginosa PA14 infection by exerting effects on the innate immunity of C. elegans that is likely mediated via regulation of a SKN-1-dependent signaling pathway. PMID:25147937

  13. A Chemosensory Adaptation Module for the Physiology Laboratory from Student-Directed "C. elegans" Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lindblom, Tim

    2006-01-01

    The model organism, "Caenorhabditis elegans," in addition to being well suited to genetics and cell biology teaching applications, can also be useful in the physiology laboratory. In this article, the author describes how students in a junior level college Comparative Physiology course have made use of "C. elegans" in semester-long,…

  14. Insight into the family of Na+/Ca2+ exchangers of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Vishal; He, Chao; Sacca-Schaeffer, Julian; Brzozowski, Eric; Martin-Herranz, Daniel E; Mendelowitz, Zelda; Fitzpatrick, David A; O'Halloran, Damien M

    2013-10-01

    Here we provide the first genome-wide in vivo analysis of the Na+/Ca2+ exchanger family in the model system Caenorhabditis elegans. We source all members of this family within the Caenorhabditis genus and reconstruct their phylogeny across humans and Drosophila melanogaster. Next, we provide a description of the expression pattern for each exchanger gene in C. elegans, revealing a wide expression in a number of tissues and cell types including sensory neurons, interneurons, motor neurons, muscle cells, and intestinal tissue. Finally, we conduct a series of behavioral and functional analyses through mutant characterization in C. elegans. From these data we demonstrate that, similar to mammalian systems, the expression of Na+/Ca2+ exchangers in C. elegans is skewed toward excitable cells, and we propose that C. elegans may be an ideal model system for the study of Na+/Ca2+ exchangers. PMID:23893482

  15. Molecular epidemiology of Italian clinical Cryptococcus neoformans var. grubii isolates.

    PubMed

    Cogliati, Massimo; Zamfirova, Ralika R; Tortorano, Anna Maria; Viviani, Maria Anna

    2013-07-01

    Cryptococcus neoformans variety grubii is the major etiological agent of cryptococcal meningitis in both immunocompromised and immunocompetent patients. The current PCR-based molecular methods are not sufficient to discriminate among the different populations of this yeast. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate the genotypes of the Italian clinical C. neoformans var. grubii isolates by multilocus sequence typing (MLST). A total of 53 isolates, each representative of a single case, were studied. Genotyping was performed using the ISHAM Cryptococcus MLST consensus scheme and the results were compared to the publically available global C. neoformans var. grubii MLST dataset. A total of 16 genotypes were identified; 14 were new genotypes, one was identical to sequence type (ST) ST81, which had been previously reported from Thailand, and one to ST23 already identified in Uganda, the USA and Korea. Sequence type ST61 was the most numerous, including 16 isolates. Network phylogenetic analysis showed that the Italian isolates could be divided into at least three clusters with similarities with those recovered in Africa, Asia and Americas. Distribution of the STs among the isolates could not be correlated to the hospital in which they were recovered or to the HIV status of the patients. The majority of the isolates belonged to the molecular type VNI; three belonged to the rare molecular type VNII and one to the VNB group, which until now had not been described in Europe. The results reveal that the Italian C. neoformans var. grubii population presents a distinct variability, displaying a high number of new genotypes, and probably recombines sexually. PMID:23286351

  16. Effects of ionizing radiation on Capsicum baccatum var. pendulum (Solanaceae).

    PubMed

    Scaldaferro, M A; Prina, A R; Moscone, E A; Kwasniewska, J

    2013-09-01

    Cytogenetic and somatic effects of various x-ray treatments were evaluated in pepper, Capsicum baccatum var. pendulum cv. "Cayenne", with the aim to assess optimal conditions for obtaining viable lines. The cytogenetic effects were quantified by counting chromosome aberrations. The level of DNA fragmentation was estimated with TUNEL test (terminal transferase mediated dUTP-fluorescein nick end labeling). Irradiation to 20 Gy with 16-h presoaking can be a suitable treatment of the selected pepper cultivar for a mutagenesis program. PMID:23747514

  17. Aporphine and bisaporphine alkaloids from Aristolochia lagesiana var. intermedia.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Marcia L R; de Pascoli, Inara C; Nascimento, Isabele R; Zukerman-Schpector, Julio; Lopes, Lucia M X

    2010-03-01

    Corydines, isocorydines, and analogous aporphine alkaloids were isolated from the leaves of Aristolochia lagesiana var. intermedia, together with three bisaporphine salts (lagesianines B-D). Their structures were determined by chemical derivatizations and spectroscopic analyses. Lagesianines B and C are the first examples of N-CH(2)-N' and C-2-O-C-1' linked dimeric aporphine alkaloids, respectively, while the monomeric units of lagesianine D, which has a carbon skeleton, are linked through C-7-C-5'via an ethane-1,2-diol group (C-7-CHOHCHOH-C-5'). PMID:20036405

  18. A microfluidic device for the continuous culture and analysis of Caenorhabditis elegans in a toxic aqueous environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Jaehoon; Nakajima, Masahiro; Tajima, Hirotaka; Huang, Qiang; Fukuda, Toshio

    2013-08-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) receives attention as a bioindicator, and the C. elegans condition has been recently analyzed using microfluidic devices equipped with an imaging system. To establish a method without an imaging system, we have proposed a novel microfluidic device with which to analyze the condition of C. elegans from the capacitance change using a pair of micro-electrodes. The device was designed to culture C. elegans, to expose C. elegans to an external stimulus, such as a chemical or toxicant, and to measure the capacitance change which indicates the condition of C. elegans. In this study, to demonstrate the capability of our device in a toxic aqueous environment, the device was applied to examine the effect of cadmium on C. elegans. Thirty L4 larval stage C. elegans were divided into three groups. One group was a control group and the other groups were exposed to cadmium solutions with concentrations of 5% and 10% LC50 for 24 h. The capacitance change and the body volume of C. elegans as a reference were measured four times and we confirmed the correlation between them. It shows that our device can analyze the condition of C. elegans without an imaging system.

  19. Generation of Antigenic Diversity in Plasmodium falciparum by Structured Rearrangement of Var Genes During Mitosis

    PubMed Central

    Kekre, Mihir; Otto, Thomas D.; Faizullabhoy, Adnan; Rayner, Julian C.; Kwiatkowski, Dominic

    2014-01-01

    The most polymorphic gene family in P. falciparum is the ∼60 var genes distributed across parasite chromosomes, both in the subtelomeres and in internal regions. They encode hypervariable surface proteins known as P. falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) that are critical for pathogenesis and immune evasion in Plasmodium falciparum. How var gene sequence diversity is generated is not currently completely understood. To address this, we constructed large clone trees and performed whole genome sequence analysis to study the generation of novel var gene sequences in asexually replicating parasites. While single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were scattered across the genome, structural variants (deletions, duplications, translocations) were focused in and around var genes, with considerable variation in frequency between strains. Analysis of more than 100 recombination events involving var exon 1 revealed that the average nucleotide sequence identity of two recombining exons was only 63% (range: 52.7–72.4%) yet the crossovers were error-free and occurred in such a way that the resulting sequence was in frame and domain architecture was preserved. Var exon 1, which encodes the immunologically exposed part of the protein, recombined in up to 0.2% of infected erythrocytes in vitro per life cycle. The high rate of var exon 1 recombination indicates that millions of new antigenic structures could potentially be generated each day in a single infected individual. We propose a model whereby var gene sequence polymorphism is mainly generated during the asexual part of the life cycle. PMID:25521112

  20. Characterization of 12 polymorphic microsatellite loci of Pityopsis graminifolia var. latifolia

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pityopsis graminifolia (Michx.) Small var. latifolia (Fern.) Semple is an herbaceous perennial that grows in close proximity to the federally endangered species P. ruthii (Small) Small. Twelve polymorphic microsatellite loci were identified from 87 samples of P. graminifolia var. latifolia and addit...

  1. 21 CFR 173.145 - Alpha-Galactosidase derived from Mortierella vinaceae var. raffinoseutilizer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... FOOD ADDITIVES PERMITTED IN FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION Enzyme Preparations and Microorganisms § 173.145...-galactosidase and parent mycelial microorganism Mortierella vinaceae var. raffinoseutilizer may be safely used...-galactosidase and the mycelia of the microorganism Mortierella vinaceae var. raffinoseutilizer which...

  2. 21 CFR 173.145 - Alpha-Galactosidase derived from Mortierella vinaceae var. raffinoseutilizer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... HUMAN CONSUMPTION Enzyme Preparations and Microorganisms § 173.145 Alpha-Galactosidase derived from... microorganism Mortierella vinaceae var. raffinoseutilizer may be safely used in food in accordance with the... microorganism Mortierella vinaceae var. raffinoseutilizer which produces the enzyme. (b) The...

  3. Proteome changes of Caenorhabditis elegans upon a Staphylococcus aureus infection

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The success of invertebrates throughout evolution is an excellent illustration of the efficiency of their defence strategies. Caenorhabditis elegans has proven to be an appropriate model for transcriptome studies of host-pathogen interactions. The aim of this paper is to complement this knowledge by investigating the worm's response to a Staphylococcus aureus infection through a 2-dimensional differential proteomics approach. Results Different types of growth media in combination with either E. coli OP50 or Staphylococcus aureus were tested for an effect on the worm's lifespan. LB agar was chosen and C. elegans samples were collected 1 h, 4 h, 8 h and 24 h post S. aureus infection or E. coli incubation. Proteomics analyses resulted in the identification of 130 spots corresponding to a total of 108 differentially expressed proteins. Conclusions Exploring four time-points discloses a dynamic insight of the reaction against a gram-positive infection at the level of the whole organism. The remarkable upregulation after 8 h and 24 h of many enzymes involved in the citric acid cycle might illustrate the cost of fighting off an infection. Intriguing is the downregulation of chaperone molecules, which are presumed to serve a protective role. A comparison with a similar experiment in which C. elegans was infected with the gram-negative Aeromonas hydrophila reveals that merely 9% of the identified spots, some of which even exhibiting an opposite regulation, are present in both studies. Hence, our findings emphasise the complexity and pathogen-specificity of the worm's immune response and form a firm basis for future functional research. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Itai Yanai, Dieter Wolf and Torben Luebke (nominated by Walter Lutz). PMID:20163716

  4. Antimicrobial Susceptibilities of Abiotrophia defectiva, Granulicatella adiacens, and Granulicatella elegans.

    PubMed

    Alberti, Michael O; Hindler, Janet A; Humphries, Romney M

    2015-01-01

    Nutritionally variant streptococci (NVS) are fastidious Gram-positive cocci comprised of the species Abiotrophia defectiva, Granulicatella adiacens, and Granulicatella elegans. NVS are an important cause of bacteremia and infective endocarditis (IE) associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) was performed for 14 antimicrobials using the broth microdilution MIC method described in the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) M45 guideline. A total of 132 clinical NVS blood isolates collected from 2008 to 2014 were tested. Species level identification of NVS isolates was achieved by 16S rRNA gene sequencing and/or matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). Ninety isolates were identified as G. adiacens, 37 as A. defectiva, and 5 as G. elegans. All isolates were susceptible to vancomycin (MIC90 = 1 ?g/ml), and none displayed high-level resistance to aminoglycosides. G. adiacens was considerably more susceptible to penicillin than A. defectiva (38.9% versus 10.8% of isolates susceptible) but was less susceptible to cephalosporins than was A. defectiva (43.3% versus 100% of isolates susceptible to ceftriaxone). Several isolates were resistant to levofloxacin (6%), erythromycin (51%), and clindamycin (10%). The MIC90 for daptomycin was ?4 ?g/ml for G. adiacens and A. defectiva. G. elegans isolates were 100% susceptible to all antimicrobials tested, with the exception of erythromycin, to which only 20% were susceptible. This study provides antimicrobial susceptibility data for a recent collection of NVS and demonstrates important NVS species-related differences with respect to susceptibility to penicillin, cephalosporins, carbapenems, and daptomycin. Species-level identification of NVS organisms when susceptibility testing is not readily available may aid in treatment decisions. PMID:26666926

  5. Genetic diversity in Tetrachaetum elegans, a mitosporic aquatic fungus.

    PubMed

    Laitung, Beryl; Chauvet, Eric; Feau, Nicolas; Fève, Katia; Chikhi, Lounès; Gardes, Monique

    2004-06-01

    Tetrachaetum elegans Ingold is a saprobic aquatic hyphomycete for which no sexual stage has yet been described. It occurs most commonly during the initial decay of tree leaves in temperate freshwater habitats and typically sporulates under water. Dispersal of the aquatic fungus takes place primarily in the water column and has a large passive component. Differences in substrate composition (e.g. quality of leaf litter) may also play a role in the distribution of different species or genotypes. The population genetic structure of T. elegans was studied using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) multilocus fingerprints. The populations were isolated from the leaf litter of three different tree genera, sampled in nine streams distributed throughout a mixed deciduous forest. Molecular markers were developed for 97 monosporic isolates using four selective primer pairs. A total of 247 fragments were scored, of which only 32 were polymorphic. Significant stream differentiation was detected for the isolates considered in this study. Analysis of molecular variance revealed that 20% of the genetic variation observed was the result of differences between streams. No correlation between genetic and geographical distances was found but a few multilocus genotypes were observed in different locations. Altogether these results suggest that environmental barriers play a role in the population structure of this aquatic fungus. No clear-cut effect of leaf litter composition on genetic variation could be demonstrated. Finally, tests of linkage disequilibrium between the 32 polymorphic AFLP loci as well as simulations did not provide a final answer regarding clonality in T. elegans. Indeed, it was possible to reject linkage equilibrium at different sampling levels and show that full linkage was unlikely. PMID:15140110

  6. Cas9 Variants Expand the Target Repertoire in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Bell, Ryan T; Fu, Becky X H; Fire, Andrew Z

    2016-02-01

    The proliferation of CRISPR/Cas9-based methods in Caenorhabditis elegans has enabled efficient genome editing and precise genomic tethering of Cas9 fusion proteins. Experimental designs using CRISPR/Cas9 are currently limited by the need for a protospacer adjacent motif (PAM) in the target with the sequence NGG. Here we report the characterization of two modified Cas9 proteins in C. elegans that recognize NGA and NGCG PAMs. We found that each variant could stimulate homologous recombination with a donor template at multiple loci and that PAM specificity was comparable to that of wild-type Cas9. To directly compare effectiveness, we used CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing to generate a set of assay strains with a common single-guide RNA (sgRNA) target sequence, but that differ in the juxtaposed PAM (NGG, NGA, or NGCG). In this controlled setting, we determined that the NGA PAM Cas9 variant can be as effective as wild-type Cas9. We similarly edited a genomic target to study the influence of the base following the NGA PAM. Using four strains with four NGAN PAMs differing only at the fourth position and adjacent to the same sgRNA target, we observed that efficient homologous replacement was attainable with any base in the fourth position, with an NGAG PAM being the most effective. In addition to demonstrating the utility of two Cas9 mutants in C. elegans and providing reagents that permit CRISPR/Cas9 experiments with fewer restrictions on potential targets, we established a means to benchmark the efficiency of different Cas9::PAM combinations that avoids variations owing to differences in the sgRNA sequence. PMID:26680661

  7. Drug Absorption Efficiency in Caenorhbditis elegans Delivered by Different Methods

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Shan-Qing; Ding, Ai-Jun; Li, Guo-Ping; Wu, Gui-Sheng; Luo, Huai-Rong

    2013-01-01

    Background Caenorhbditis elegans has being vigorously used as a model organism in many research fields and often accompanied by administrating with various drugs. The methods of delivering drugs to worms are varied from one study to another, which make difficult in comparing results between studies. Methodology/Principal Findings We evaluated the drug absorption efficiency in C. elegans using five frequently used methods with resveratrol with low aqueous solubility and water-soluble 5-Fluoro-2?-deoxyuridine (FUDR) as positive compounds. The drugs were either applied to the LB medium with bacteria OP50, before spreading onto Nematode Growth Medium (NGM) plates (LB medium method), or to the NGM with live (NGM live method) or dead bacteria (NGM dead method), or spotting the drug solution to the surface of plates directly (spot dead method), or growing the worms in liquid medium (liquid growing method). The concentration of resveratrol and FUDR increased gradually within C. elegans and reached the highest during 12 hours to one day and then decreased slowly. At the same time point, the higher the drug concentration, the higher the metabolism rate. The drug concentrations in worms fed with dead bacteria were higher than with live bacteria at the same time point. Consistently, the drug concentration in medium with live bacteria decreased much faster than in medium with dead bacteria, reach to about half of the original concentration within 12 hours. Conclusion Resveratrol with low aqueous solubility and water-soluble FUDR have the same absorption and metabolism pattern. The drug metabolism rate in worms was both dosage and time dependent. NGM dead method and liquid growing method achieved the best absorption efficiency in worms. The drug concentration within worms was comparable with that in mice, providing a bridge for dose translation from worms to mammals. PMID:23451103

  8. Prokaryote–eukaryote interactions identified by using Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Peleg, Anton Y.; Tampakakis, Emmanouil; Fuchs, Beth Burgwyn; Eliopoulos, George M.; Moellering, Robert C.; Mylonakis, Eleftherios

    2008-01-01

    Prokaryote–eukaryote interactions are ubiquitous and have important medical and environmental significance. Despite this, a paucity of data exists on the mechanisms and pathogenic consequences of bacterial–fungal encounters within a living host. We used the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a substitute host to study the interactions between two ecologically related and clinically troublesome pathogens, the prokaryote, Acinetobacter baumannii, and the eukaryote, Candida albicans. After co-infecting C. elegans with these organisms, we observed that A. baumannii inhibits filamentation, a key virulence determinant of C. albicans. This antagonistic, cross-kingdom interaction led to attenuated virulence of C. albicans, as determined by improved nematode survival when infected with both pathogens. In vitro coinfection assays in planktonic and biofilm environments supported the inhibitory effects of A. baumannii toward C. albicans, further showing a predilection of A. baumannii for C. albicans filaments. Interestingly, we demonstrate a likely evolutionary defense by C. albicans against A. baumannii, whereby C. albicans inhibits A. baumannii growth once a quorum develops. This counteroffensive is at least partly mediated by the C. albicans quorum-sensing molecule farnesol. We used the C. elegans–A. baumannii–C. albicans coinfection model to screen an A. baumannii mutant library, leading to the identification of several mutants attenuated in their inhibitory activity toward C. albicans. These findings present an extension to the current paradigm of studying monomicrobial pathogenesis in C. elegans and by use of genetic manipulation, provides a whole-animal model system to investigate the complex dynamics of a polymicrobial infection. PMID:18794525

  9. Polyamine-independent Expression of Caenorhabditis elegans Antizyme.

    PubMed

    Stegehake, Dirk; Kurosinski, Marc-André; Schürmann, Sabine; Daniel, Jens; Lüersen, Kai; Liebau, Eva

    2015-07-17

    Degradation of ornithine decarboxylase, the rate-limiting enzyme of polyamine biosynthesis, is promoted by the protein antizyme. Expression of antizyme is positively regulated by rising polyamine concentrations that induce a +1 translational frameshift required for production of the full-length protein. Antizyme itself is negatively regulated by the antizyme inhibitor. In our study, the regulation of Caenorhabditis elegans antizyme was investigated, and the antizyme inhibitor was identified. By applying a novel GFP-based method to monitor antizyme frameshifting in vivo, we show that the induction of translational frameshifting also occurs under stressful conditions. Interestingly, during starvation, the initiation of frameshifting was independent of polyamine concentrations. Because frameshifting was also prevalent in a polyamine auxotroph double mutant, a polyamine-independent regulation of antizyme frameshifting is suggested. Polyamine-independent induction of antizyme expression was found to be negatively regulated by the peptide transporter PEPT-1, as well as the target of rapamycin, but not by the daf-2 insulin signaling pathway. Stress-dependent expression of C. elegans antizyme occurred morely slowly than expression in response to increased polyamine levels, pointing to a more general reaction to unfavorable conditions and a diversion away from proliferation and reproduction toward conservation of energy. Interestingly, antizyme expression was found to drastically increase in aging individuals in a postreproductive manner. Although knockdown of antizyme did not affect the lifespan of C. elegans, knockdown of the antizyme inhibitor led to a significant reduction in lifespan. This is most likely caused by an increase in antizyme-mediated degradation of ornithine decarboxylase-1 and a resulting reduction in cellular polyamine levels. PMID:26032421

  10. The transcription start site landscape of C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Taro Leo; Hashimoto, Shin-ichi; Gu, Sam Guoping; Morton, J. Jason; Stadler, Michael; Blumenthal, Thomas; Fire, Andrew; Morishita, Shinichi

    2013-01-01

    More than half of Caenorhabditis elegans pre-mRNAs lose their original 5? ends in a process termed “trans-splicing” in which the RNA extending from the transcription start site (TSS) to the site of trans-splicing of the primary transcript, termed the “outron,” is replaced with a 22-nt spliced leader. This complicates the mapping of TSSs, leading to a lack of available TSS mapping data for these genes. We used growth at low temperature and nuclear isolation to enrich for transcripts still containing outrons, applying a modified SAGE capture procedure and high-throughput sequencing to characterize 5? termini in this transcript population. We report from this data both a landscape of 5?-end utilization for C. elegans and a representative collection of TSSs for 7351 trans-spliced genes. TSS distributions for individual genes were often dispersed, with a greater average number of TSSs for trans-spliced genes, suggesting that trans-splicing may remove selective pressure for a single TSS. Upstream of newly defined TSSs, we observed well-known motifs (including TATAA-box and SP1) as well as novel motifs. Several of these motifs showed association with tissue-specific expression and/or conservation among six worm species. Comparing TSS features between trans-spliced and non-trans-spliced genes, we found stronger signals among outron TSSs for preferentially positioning of flanking nucleosomes and for downstream Pol II enrichment. Our data provide an enabling resource for both experimental and theoretical analysis of gene structure and function in C. elegans. PMID:23636945

  11. Structural Properties of the Caenorhabditis elegans Neuronal Network

    PubMed Central

    Varshney, Lav R.; Chen, Beth L.; Paniagua, Eric; Hall, David H.; Chklovskii, Dmitri B.

    2011-01-01

    Despite recent interest in reconstructing neuronal networks, complete wiring diagrams on the level of individual synapses remain scarce and the insights into function they can provide remain unclear. Even for Caenorhabditis elegans, whose neuronal network is relatively small and stereotypical from animal to animal, published wiring diagrams are neither accurate nor complete and self-consistent. Using materials from White et al. and new electron micrographs we assemble whole, self-consistent gap junction and chemical synapse networks of hermaphrodite C. elegans. We propose a method to visualize the wiring diagram, which reflects network signal flow. We calculate statistical and topological properties of the network, such as degree distributions, synaptic multiplicities, and small-world properties, that help in understanding network signal propagation. We identify neurons that may play central roles in information processing, and network motifs that could serve as functional modules of the network. We explore propagation of neuronal activity in response to sensory or artificial stimulation using linear systems theory and find several activity patterns that could serve as substrates of previously described behaviors. Finally, we analyze the interaction between the gap junction and the chemical synapse networks. Since several statistical properties of the C. elegans network, such as multiplicity and motif distributions are similar to those found in mammalian neocortex, they likely point to general principles of neuronal networks. The wiring diagram reported here can help in understanding the mechanistic basis of behavior by generating predictions about future experiments involving genetic perturbations, laser ablations, or monitoring propagation of neuronal activity in response to stimulation. PMID:21304930

  12. Undulatory locomotion of finite filaments: lessons from Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berman, R. S.; Kenneth, O.; Sznitman, J.; Leshansky, A. M.

    2013-07-01

    Undulatory swimming is a widespread propulsion strategy adopted by many small-scale organisms including various single-cell eukaryotes and nematodes. In this work, we report a comprehensive study of undulatory locomotion of a finite filament using (i) approximate resistive force theory (RFT) assuming a local nature of hydrodynamic interaction between the filament and the surrounding viscous liquid and (ii) particle-based numerical computations taking into account the intra-filament hydrodynamic interaction. Using the ubiquitous model of a propagating sinusoidal waveform, we identify the limit of applicability of the RFT and determine the optimal propulsion gait in terms of (i) swimming distance per period of undulation and (ii) hydrodynamic propulsion efficiency. The occurrence of the optimal swimming gait maximizing hydrodynamic efficiency at finite wavelength in particle-based computations diverges from the prediction of the RFT. To compare the model swimmer powered by sine wave undulations to biological undulatory swimmers, we apply the particle-based approach to study locomotion of the model organism nematode Caenorhabditis elegans using the swimming gait extracted from experiments. The analysis reveals that even though the amplitude and the wavenumber of undulations are similar to those determined for the best performing sinusoidal swimmer, C. elegans overperforms the latter in terms of both displacement and hydrodynamic efficiency. Further comparison with other undulatory microorganisms reveals that many adopt waveforms with characteristics similar to the optimal model swimmer, yet real swimmers still manage to beat the best performing sine-wave swimmer in terms of distance covered per period. Overall our results underline the importance of further waveform optimization, as periodic undulations adopted by C. elegans and other organisms deviate considerably from a simple sine wave.

  13. Use of incremental analysis updates in 4D-Var data assimilation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Banglin; Tallapragada, Vijay; Weng, Fuzhong; Sippel, Jason; Ma, Zaizhong

    2015-12-01

    The four-dimensional variational (4D-Var) data assimilation systems used in most operational and research centers use initial condition increments as control variables and adjust initial increments to find optimal analysis solutions. This approach may sometimes create discontinuities in analysis fields and produce undesirable spin ups and spin downs. This study explores using incremental analysis updates (IAU) in 4D-Var to reduce the analysis discontinuities. IAU-based 4D-Var has almost the same mathematical formula as conventional 4D-Var if the initial condition increments are replaced with time-integrated increments as control variables. The IAU technique was implemented in the NASA/GSFC 4D-Var prototype and compared against a control run without IAU. The results showed that the initial precipitation spikes were removed and that other discontinuities were also reduced, especially for the analysis of surface temperature.

  14. Empirical analysis on future-cash arbitrage risk with portfolio VaR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Rongda; Li, Cong; Wang, Weijin; Wang, Ze

    2014-03-01

    This paper constructs the positive arbitrage position by alternating the spot index with Chinese Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) portfolio and estimating the arbitrage-free interval of futures with the latest trade data. Then, an improved Delta-normal method was used, which replaces the simple linear correlation coefficient with tail dependence correlation coefficient, to measure VaR (Value-at-risk) of the arbitrage position. Analysis of VaR implies that the risk of future-cash arbitrage is less than that of investing completely in either futures or spot market. Then according to the compositional VaR and the marginal VaR, we should increase the futures position and decrease the spot position appropriately to minimize the VaR, which can minimize risk subject to certain revenues.

  15. Occurrence of Pyrodinium bahamense var. compressum along the southern coast of the Baja California Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Gárate-Lizárraga, Ismael; González-Armas, Rogelio

    2011-03-01

    As part of a continuing toxic microalgae monitoring program, 22 phytoplankton samples were collected from July to November 2010 at several sampling stations along the southern coast of the Baja California Peninsula. For the first time, the toxic dinoflagellate Pyrodinium bahamense var. compressum was found along the southeastern and southwestern coasts of the peninsula. P. bahamense var. bahamense was first observed off San José del Cabo, which is an extension of the range of this variety. Both varieties occur as solitary cells. P. bahamense var. compressum occurred at temperatures ranging between 24.5°C and 31°C, whereas var. P.bahamense occurred at 28.5°C to 29°C, indicating its tropical and subtropical nature. Occurrence of P. bahamense var. compressum along this coastline may be related to El Niño 2009-2010. PMID:21276986

  16. Caenorhabditis elegans - A model system for space biology studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Thomas E.; Nelson, Gregory A.

    1991-01-01

    The utility of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans in studies spanning aspects of development, aging, and radiobiology is reviewed. These topics are interrelated via cellular and DNA repair processes especially in the context of oxidative stress and free-radical metabolism. The relevance of these research topics to problems in space biology is discussed and properties of the space environment are outlined. Exposure to the space-flight environment can induce rapid changes in living systems that are similar to changes occurring during aging; manipulation of these environmental parameters may represent an experimental strategy for studies of development and senescence. The current and future opportunities for such space-flight experimentation are presented.

  17. Transgene-mediated cosuppression in the C. elegans germ line

    PubMed Central

    Dernburg, Abby F.; Zalevsky, Jonathan; Colaiácovo, Mónica P.; Villeneuve, Anne M.

    2000-01-01

    Functional silencing of chromosomal loci can be induced by transgenes (cosuppression) or by introduction of double-stranded RNA (RNAi). Here, we demonstrate the generality of and define rules for a transgene-mediated cosuppression phenomenon in the Caenorhabditis elegans germ line. Functional repression is not a consequence of persistent physical association between transgenes and endogenous genes or of mutations in affected genes. The cosuppression mechanism likely involves an RNA mediator that defines its target specificity, reminiscent of RNAi. Cosuppression is strongly abrogated in rde-2 and mut-7 mutants, but is not blocked in an rde-1 mutant, indicating that cosuppression and RNAi have overlapping but distinct genetic requirements. PMID:10887151

  18. Koumine, Humantenine, and Yohimbane Alkaloids from Gelsemium elegans.

    PubMed

    Xu, You-Kai; Yang, Lin; Liao, Shang-Gao; Cao, Pei; Wu, Bin; Hu, Hua-Bin; Guo, Juan; Zhang, Ping

    2015-07-24

    Nine new alkaloids of the koumine (1-4), humantenine (5-7), and yohimbane (8, 9) types as well as 12 known analogues were isolated from the leaves and vine stems of Gelsemium elegans. Compound 1 is the first N-4-demethyl alkaloid of the koumine type, compound 7 is the first nor-humantenine alkaloid, and compounds 8 and 9 are the first N-1-oxide and the first seco-E-ring alkaloids, respectively, of the yohimbane type. Compounds 1 and 7 exhibited moderate cytotoxicity against five human tumor cell lines with IC50 values in the range 4.6-9.3 ?M. PMID:26103517

  19. C. elegans Metabolic Gene Regulatory Networks Govern the Cellular Economy

    PubMed Central

    Watson, Emma; Walhout, Albertha J.M.

    2014-01-01

    Diet greatly impacts metabolism in health and disease. In response to the presence or absence of specific nutrients, metabolic gene regulatory networks sense the metabolic state of the cell and regulate metabolic flux accordingly, for instance by the transcriptional control of metabolic enzymes. Here we discuss recent insights regarding metazoan metabolic regulatory networks using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a model, including the modular organization of metabolic gene regulatory networks, the prominent impact of diet on the transcriptome and metabolome, specialized roles of nuclear hormone receptors in responding to dietary conditions, regulation of metabolic genes and metabolic regulators by microRNAs, and feedback between metabolic genes and their regulators. PMID:24731597

  20. Folate status of gut microbiome affects Caenorhabditis elegans lifespan

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    In a paper in BMC Biology Virk et al. show that Caenorhabditis elegans lifespan is extended in response to a diet of folate-deficient Escherichia coli. The deficiencies in folate biosynthesis were due to an aroD mutation, or treatment of E. coli with sulfa drugs, which are mimics of the folate precursor para-aminobenzoic acid. This study suggests that pharmacological manipulation of the gut microbiome folate status may be a viable approach to slow animal aging, and raises questions about folate supplementation. See research article http://www.http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7007/10/67 PMID:22849295

  1. Google matrix analysis of C.elegans neural network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kandiah, V.; Shepelyansky, D. L.

    2014-05-01

    We study the structural properties of the neural network of the C.elegans (worm) from a directed graph point of view. The Google matrix analysis is used to characterize the neuron connectivity structure and node classifications are discussed and compared with physiological properties of the cells. Our results are obtained by a proper definition of neural directed network and subsequent eigenvector analysis which recovers some results of previous studies. Our analysis highlights particular sets of important neurons constituting the core of the neural system. The applications of PageRank, CheiRank and ImpactRank to characterization of interdependency of neurons are discussed.

  2. Elucidating the Mechanism of Weissella-dependent Lifespan Extension in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jiyun; Kwon, Gayeung; Lim, Young-Hee

    2015-01-01

    The mechanism whereby lactic acid bacteria extend the lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans has previously been elucidated. However, the role of Weissella species has yet not been studied. We show that Weissella koreensis and Weissella cibaria significantly (p?elegans compared with Escherichia coli OP50 and induce the expression of several genes related to lifespan extension (daf-16, aak-2, jnk-1, sod-3 and hif-1). Oral administration of Weissella altered reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and lowered the accumulation of lipofuscin and increased locomotor activity (which translates to a delay in ageing). Moreover, Weissella-fed C. elegans had decreased body sizes, brood sizes, ATP levels and pharyngeal pumping rates compared with E. coli OP50-fed worms. Furthermore, mutations in sod-3, hif-1 or skn-1 did not alter lifespan extension compared with wild-type C. elegans. However, C. elegans failed to display lifespan extension in loss-of-function mutants of daf-16, aak-2 and jnk-1, which highlights the potential role of these genes in Weissella-induced longevity in C. elegans. Weissella species extend C. elegans lifespan by activating DAF-16 via the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathway, which is related to stress response, and the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK)-pathway that is activated by dietary restriction. PMID:26601690

  3. Elucidating the Mechanism of Weissella-dependent Lifespan Extension in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jiyun; Kwon, Gayeung; Lim, Young-Hee

    2015-01-01

    The mechanism whereby lactic acid bacteria extend the lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans has previously been elucidated. However, the role of Weissella species has yet not been studied. We show that Weissella koreensis and Weissella cibaria significantly (p < 0.05) extend the lifespan of C. elegans compared with Escherichia coli OP50 and induce the expression of several genes related to lifespan extension (daf-16, aak-2, jnk-1, sod-3 and hif-1). Oral administration of Weissella altered reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and lowered the accumulation of lipofuscin and increased locomotor activity (which translates to a delay in ageing). Moreover, Weissella-fed C. elegans had decreased body sizes, brood sizes, ATP levels and pharyngeal pumping rates compared with E. coli OP50-fed worms. Furthermore, mutations in sod-3, hif-1 or skn-1 did not alter lifespan extension compared with wild-type C. elegans. However, C. elegans failed to display lifespan extension in loss-of-function mutants of daf-16, aak-2 and jnk-1, which highlights the potential role of these genes in Weissella-induced longevity in C. elegans. Weissella species extend C. elegans lifespan by activating DAF-16 via the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathway, which is related to stress response, and the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK)-pathway that is activated by dietary restriction. PMID:26601690

  4. Isolation of Specific Neurons from C. elegans Larvae for Gene Expression Profiling

    PubMed Central

    Spencer, W. Clay; McWhirter, Rebecca; Miller, Tyne; Strasbourger, Pnina; Thompson, Owen; Hillier, LaDeana W.; Waterston, Robert H.; Miller, David M.

    2014-01-01

    Background The simple and well-described structure of the C. elegans nervous system offers an unprecedented opportunity to identify the genetic programs that define the connectivity and function of individual neurons and their circuits. A correspondingly precise gene expression map of C. elegans neurons would facilitate the application of genetic methods toward this goal. Here we describe a powerful new approach, SeqCeL (RNA-Seq of C. elegans cells) for producing gene expression profiles of specific larval C. elegans neurons. Methods and Results We have exploited available GFP reporter lines for FACS isolation of specific larval C. elegans neurons for RNA-Seq analysis. Our analysis showed that diverse classes of neurons are accessible to this approach. To demonstrate the applicability of this strategy to rare neuron types, we generated RNA-Seq profiles of the NSM serotonergic neurons that occur as a single bilateral pair of cells in the C. elegans pharynx. These data detected >1,000 NSM enriched transcripts, including the majority of previously known NSM-expressed genes. Significance This work offers a simple and robust protocol for expression profiling studies of post-embryonic C. elegans neurons and thus provides an important new method for identifying candidate genes for key roles in neuron-specific development and function. PMID:25372608

  5. Population dynamics and habitat sharing of natural populations of Caenorhabditis elegans and C. briggsae

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a major model organism in laboratory biology. Very little is known, however, about its ecology, including where it proliferates. In the past, C. elegans was mainly isolated from human-made compost heaps, where it was overwhelmingly found in the non-feeding dauer diapause stage. Results C. elegans and C. briggsae were found in large, proliferating populations in rotting plant material (fruits and stems) in several locations in mainland France. Both species were found to co-occur in samples isolated from a given plant species. Population counts spanned a range from one to more than 10,000 Caenorhabditis individuals on a single fruit or stem. Some populations with an intermediate census size (10 to 1,000) contained no dauer larvae at all, whereas larger populations always included some larvae in the pre-dauer or dauer stages. We report on associated micro-organisms, including pathogens. We systematically sampled a spatio-temporally structured set of rotting apples in an apple orchard in Orsay over four years. C. elegans and C. briggsae were abundantly found every year, but their temporal distributions did not coincide. C. briggsae was found alone in summer, whereas both species co-occurred in early fall and C. elegans was found alone in late fall. Competition experiments in the laboratory at different temperatures show that C. briggsae out-competes C. elegans at high temperatures, whereas C. elegans out-competes C. briggsae at lower temperatures. Conclusions C. elegans and C. briggsae proliferate in the same rotting vegetal substrates. In contrast to previous surveys of populations in compost heaps, we found fully proliferating populations with no dauer larvae. The temporal sharing of the habitat by the two species coincides with their temperature preference in the laboratory, with C. briggsae populations growing faster than C. elegans at higher temperatures, and vice at lower temperatures. PMID:22731941

  6. Mucoraceous moulds involved in the commercial fermentation of Sufu Pehtze.

    PubMed

    Han, Bei-Zhong; Kuijpers, Angelina F A; Thanh, Nguyen V; Nout, M J Robert

    2004-04-01

    Sufu is a fermented cheese-like soybean product in China and Vietnam, obtained by fungal solid-state fermentation of soybean curd (tofu), which results in moulded tofu or 'pehtze'. The final product sufu is obtained by maturing pehtze in a brine containing alcohol and salt during a period of several months. The present report deals with the identity and phylogenetic relationships of mould starter cultures used for the preparation ofpehtze. Starter cultures used in commercial pehtze fermentation were obtained from factories located in several provinces of China and Vietnam, isolated from their pehtze and some were obtained from culture collections. They were identified as Actinomucor repens, Actinomucor taiwanensis, Mucor circinelloides, Mocur hiemalis, Mocur racemosus, and Rhizopus microsporus var. microsporus. Phylogenetic relations based on sequencing of genomic DNA of these starters and of relevant control strains from collections indicate that the genera Mucor, Actinomucor and Rhizopus form distinct and homogenous clusters, with Mucor and Actinomucor showing a slightly closer relationship with each other than with Rhizopus. PMID:15028872

  7. Variability of chemical composition and antioxidant activity of essential oils between Myrtus communis var. Leucocarpa DC and var. Melanocarpa DC.

    PubMed

    Petretto, Giacomo Luigi; Maldini, Mariateresa; Addis, Roberta; Chessa, Mario; Foddai, Marzia; Rourke, Jonathan P; Pintore, Giorgio

    2016-04-15

    Essential oils (EOs) from several individuals of Myrtus communis L. (M. communis) growing in different habitats in Sardinia have been studied. The analyses were focused on four groups of samples, namely cultivated and wild M. communis var. melanocarpa DC, characterized by red/purple berries, and cultivated and wild M. communis var. leucocarpa DC, characterized by white berries. Qualitative and quantitative analyses demonstrated different EO fingerprints among the studied samples: cultivated and wild leucocarpa variety differs mainly from the melanocarpa variety by a high amount of myrtenyl acetate (>200 mg/mL and 0.4 mg/mL in leucocarpa and melanocarpa varieties respectively). Conversely, the wild group is characterized by a higher amount, compared with the cultivated species, of linalool (about 110 mg/mL and 20 mg/mL respectively), linalyl acetate (about 24 mg/mL and about 6 mg/mL respectively) whereas EOs of the cultivated plants were rich in pinocarveol-cis compared with wild plants (about 2 mg/mL and about 0.5 mg/mL respectively). Principal component analysis applied to the chromatographic data confirm a differentiation and classification of EOs from the four groups of M. communis plants. Finally, antioxidant activity of the studied EOs shows differences between the various categories of samples. PMID:26616932

  8. Evolution of host innate defence: insights from C. elegans and primitive invertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Irazoqui, Javier E.; Urbach, Jonathan M.; Ausubel, Frederick M.

    2010-01-01

    Preface The genetically tractable model organism Caenorhabditis elegans was first used to model bacterial virulence in vivo a decade ago. Since then, great strides have been made in the identification of host response pathways that are involved in the defence against infection. Strikingly, C. elegans seems to detect and respond to infection without the involvement of its Toll-like receptor homologue, in contrast to the well-established role for these proteins in innate immunity in mammals. What, therefore, do we know about host defence mechanisms in C. elegans, and what can they tell us about innate immunity in higher organisms? PMID:20029447

  9. Nematodes feel a craving--using Caenorhabditis elegans as a model to study alcohol addiction.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Geng; Zhang, Fen; Li, Wei

    2014-08-01

    Alcohol is the most frequently-used addictive drug. However, the mechanism by which its consumption leads to addiction remains largely elusive. Given the conservation of behavioral reactions to alcohol, Caenorhabitis elegans (C. elegans) has been effectively used as a model system to investigate the relevant molecular targets and pathways mediating these responses. In this article, we review the roles of BK channels (also called SLO-1), the lipid microenvironment, receptors, the synaptic machinery, and neurotransmitters in both the acute and chronic effects of alcohol. We provide an overview of the genes and mechanisms involved in alcoholismrelated behaviors in C. elegans. PMID:25008572

  10. Insights from the worm: The C. elegans model for innate immunity

    PubMed Central

    Ermolaeva, Maria A.; Schumacher, Björn

    2014-01-01

    The nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans comprises an ancestral immune system. C. elegans recognizes and responds to viral, bacterial, and fungal infections. Components of the RNA interference machinery respond to viral infection, while highly conserved MAPK signaling pathways activate the innate immune response to bacterial infection. C. elegans has been particularly important for exploring the role of innate immunity in organismal stress resistance and the regulation of longevity. Also functions of neuronal sensing of infectious bacteria have recently been uncovered. Studies on nematode immunity can be instructive in exploring innate immune signaling in the absence of specialized immune cells and adaptive immunity. PMID:24856329

  11. The Caenorhabditis elegans Rad17 Homolog HPR-17 Is Required for Telomere Replication

    PubMed Central

    Boerckel, Julie; Walker, Dana; Ahmed, Shawn

    2007-01-01

    Subunits of the Rad9/Rad1/Hus1 (9-1-1) proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PNCA)-like sliding clamp are required for DNA damage responses and telomerase-mediated telomere replication in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. PCNA sliding clamps are loaded onto DNA by a replication factor C (RFC) clamp loader. The C. elegans Rad17 RFC clamp loader homolog, hpr-17, functions in the same pathway as the 9-1-1 complex with regard to both the DNA damage response and telomerase-mediated telomere elongation. Thus, hpr-17 defines an RFC-like complex that facilitates telomerase activity in vivo in C. elegans. PMID:17339221

  12. Bacopa monnieri promotes longevity in Caenorhabditis elegans under stress conditions

    PubMed Central

    Phulara, Suresh C.; Shukla, Virendra; Tiwari, Sudeep; Pandey, Rakesh

    2015-01-01

    Background: Bacopa monnieri (L.) Pennell, commonly known as Brahmi is an important medicinal plant traditionally used as memory enhancer and antiepileptic agent. Objective: The present study investigated antioxidant and stress resistance potentials of B. monnieri aqueous extract (BMW) using Caenorhabditis elegans animal model system. Materials and Methods: The antioxidant activity of the BMW was measured using in vitro (DPPH, reducing power and total polyphenol content) and in vivo (DCF-DA assay) assays. The antistress potential of BMW (0.1, 0.01, and 0.001 mg/ml) was evaluated through thermal stress (37°C) and oxidative stress (10 mM paraquat) using C. elegans. Quantification of the HSP-16.2 level was done using CL2070 transgenic worms. Results: Present study reveals that BMW possess in vitro and in vivo antioxidant activities. BMW significantly enhanced stress tolerance and increased the mean lifespan of worms during thermal and oxidative stress, although it did not extend lifespan at 20°C and attenuated age dependent decline in physiological behaviors. Moreover, it was shown that BMW was able to up-regulate expression of stress associated gene hsp-16.2, which significantly (P < 0.001) extends the mean lifespan of worms under stress conditions. Conclusion: The study strongly suggests that BMW acts as an antistressor and potent reactive oxygen species scavenger which enhances the survival of the worms in different stress conditions. PMID:25829783

  13. Crossover heterogeneity in the absence of hotspots in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Kaur, Taniya; Rockman, Matthew V

    2014-01-01

    Crossovers play mechanical roles in meiotic chromosome segregation, generate genetic diversity by producing new allelic combinations, and facilitate evolution by decoupling linked alleles. In almost every species studied to date, crossover distributions are dramatically nonuniform, differing among sexes and across genomes, with spatial variation in crossover rates on scales from whole chromosomes to subkilobase hotspots. To understand the regulatory forces dictating these heterogeneous distributions a crucial first step is the fine-scale characterization of crossover distributions. Here we define the wild-type distribution of crossovers along a region of the C. elegans chromosome II at unprecedented resolution, using recombinant chromosomes of 243 hermaphrodites and 226 males. We find that well-characterized large-scale domains, with little fine-scale rate heterogeneity, dominate this region's crossover landscape. Using the Gini coefficient as a summary statistic, we find that this region of the C. elegans genome has the least heterogeneous fine-scale crossover distribution yet observed among model organisms, and we show by simulation that the data are incompatible with a mammalian-type hotspot-rich landscape. The large-scale structural domains-the low-recombination center and the high-recombination arm-have a discrete boundary that we localize to a small region. This boundary coincides with the arm-center boundary defined both by nuclear-envelope attachment of DNA in somatic cells and GC content, consistent with proposals that these features of chromosome organization may be mechanical causes and evolutionary consequences of crossover recombination. PMID:24172135

  14. Curcumin-mediated lifespan extension in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Liao, Vivian Hsiu-Chuan; Yu, Chan-Wei; Chu, Yu-Ju; Li, Wen-Hsuan; Hsieh, Yi-Chen; Wang, Teng-Ting

    2011-10-01

    Curcumin is the active ingredient in the herbal medicine and dietary spice, turmeric (Curcuma longa). It has a wide range of biological activities, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, chemopreventive, and chemotherapeutic activities. We examined the effects of curcumin on the lifespan and aging in Caenorhabditis elegans, and found that it responded to curcumin with an increased lifespan and reduced intracellular reactive oxygen species and lipofuscin during aging. We analyzed factors that might influence lifespan extension by curcumin. We showed that lifespan extension by curcumin in C. elegans is attributed to its antioxidative properties but not its antimicrobial properties. Moreover, we showed that lifespan extension had effects on body size and the pharyngeal pumping rate but not on reproduction. Finally, lifespan tests with selected stress- and lifespan-relevant mutant strains revealed that the lifespan-extending phenotype was absent from the osr-1, sek-1, mek-1, skn-1, unc-43, sir-2.1, and age-1 mutants, whereas curcumin treatment prolonged the lifespan of mev-1 and daf-16 mutants. Our study has unraveled a diversity of modes of action and signaling pathways to longevity and aging with curcumin exposure in vivo. PMID:21855561

  15. Genistein from Vigna angularis Extends Lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Eun Byeol; Ahn, Dalrae; Kim, Ban Ji; Lee, So Yeon; Seo, Hyun Won; Cha, Youn-Soo; Jeon, Hoon; Eun, Jae Soon; Cha, Dong Seok; Kim, Dae Keun

    2015-01-01

    The seed of Vigna angularis has long been cultivated as a food or a folk medicine in East Asia. Genistein (4?,5,7-trihydroxyisoflavone), a dietary phytoestrogen present in this plant, has been known to possess various biological properties. In this study, we investigated the possible lifespan-extending effects of genistein using Caenorhabditis elegans model system. We found that the lifespan of nematode was significantly prolonged in the presence of genistein under normal culture condition. In addition, genistein elevated the survival rate of nematode against stressful environment including heat and oxidative conditions. Further studies demonstrated that genistein-mediated increased stress tolerance of nematode could be attributed to enhanced expressions of stress resistance proteins such as superoxide dismutase (SOD-3) and heat shock protein (HSP-16.2). Moreover, we failed to find genistein-induced significant change in aging-related factors including reproduction, food intake, and growth, indicating genistein exerts longevity activity independent of affecting these factors. Genistein treatment also led to an up-regulation of locomotory ability of aged nematode, suggesting genistein affects healthspan as well as lifespan of nematode. Our results represent that genistein has beneficial effects on the lifespan of C. elegans under both of normal and stress condition via elevating expressions of stress resistance proteins. PMID:25593647

  16. Hierarchical sparse coding in the sensory system of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Zaslaver, Alon; Liani, Idan; Shtangel, Oshrat; Ginzburg, Shira; Yee, Lisa; Sternberg, Paul W.

    2015-01-01

    Animals with compact sensory systems face an encoding problem where a small number of sensory neurons are required to encode information about its surrounding complex environment. Using Caenorhabditis elegans worms as a model, we ask how chemical stimuli are encoded by a small and highly connected sensory system. We first generated a comprehensive library of transgenic worms where each animal expresses a genetically encoded calcium indicator in individual sensory neurons. This library includes the vast majority of the sensory system in C. elegans. Imaging from individual sensory neurons while subjecting the worms to various stimuli allowed us to compile a comprehensive functional map of the sensory system at single neuron resolution. The functional map reveals that despite the dense wiring, chemosensory neurons represent the environment using sparse codes. Moreover, although anatomically closely connected, chemo- and mechano-sensory neurons are functionally segregated. In addition, the code is hierarchical, where few neurons participate in encoding multiple cues, whereas other sensory neurons are stimulus specific. This encoding strategy may have evolved to mitigate the constraints of a compact sensory system. PMID:25583501

  17. Characterization of mitochondrial thioredoxin reductase from C. elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Lacey, Brian M.; Hondal, Robert J. . E-mail: Robert.Hondal@uvm.edu

    2006-08-04

    Thioredoxin reductase catalyzes the NADPH-dependent reduction of the catalytic disulfide bond of thioredoxin. In mammals and other higher eukaryotes, thioredoxin reductases contain the rare amino acid selenocysteine at the active site. The mitochondrial enzyme from Caenorhabditis elegans, however, contains a cysteine residue in place of selenocysteine. The mitochondrial C. elegans thioredoxin reductase was cloned from an expressed sequence tag and then produced in Escherichia coli as an intein-fusion protein. The purified recombinant enzyme has a k {sub cat} of 610 min{sup -1} and a K {sub m} of 610 {mu}M using E. coli thioredoxin as substrate. The reported k {sub cat} is 25% of the k {sub cat} of the mammalian enzyme and is 43-fold higher than a cysteine mutant of mammalian thioredoxin reductase. The enzyme would reduce selenocysteine, but not hydrogen peroxide or insulin. The flanking glycine residues of the GCCG motif were mutated to serine. The mutants improved substrate binding, but decreased the catalytic rate.

  18. Transformation of 1- and 2-methylnaphthalene by Cunninghamella elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Cerniglia, C.E.; Lambert, K.J.; Miller, D.W.; Freeman, J.P.

    1984-01-01

    Cunninghamella elegans metabolized 1- and 2-methylnaphthalene primarily at the methyl group to form 1- and 2-hydroxymethylnaphthalene, respectively. Other compounds isolated and identified were 1- and 2-naphthoic acids, 5-hydroxy-1-naphthoic acid, 5-hydroxy-2-naphthoic acid, 6-hydroxy-2-naphthoic acid, and phenolic derivatives of 1- and 2-methylnaphthalene. The metabolites were isolated by thin-layer and reverse-phase high-presure liquid chromatography and characterized by the application of UV-visible absorption, /sup 1/H nuclear magnetic resonance, and mass spectral techniques. Experiments with (8-/sup 14/C)2-methylnaphthalene indicated that over a 72-h period, 9.8% of 2-methylnaphthalene was oxidized to metabolic products. The ratio of organic-soluble to water-soluble metabolites at 2 h was 92:8, and at 72 h it was 41:59. Enzymatic treatment of the 48-h aqueous phase with either ..beta..-glucuronidase or arylsufatase released 60% of the metabolites of 2-methylnaphthalene that were extractable with ethyl acetate. In both cases, the major conjugates released were 5-hydroxy-2-naphthoic acid and 6-hydroxy-2-naphthoic acid. The ratio of the water-soluble glucuronide conjugates to sulfate conjugates was 1:1. Incubation of C. elegans with 2-methylnaphthalene under an /sup 18/O/sub 2/ atmosphere and subsequent mass spectral analysis of 2-hydroxymethylnaphthalene indicated that hydroxylation of the methyl group is catalyzed by a monooxygenase. 23 references.

  19. A Distributed Chemosensory Circuit for Oxygen Preference in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Andy J; Chronis, Nikolas; Karow, David S; Marletta, Michael A; Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2006-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has complex, naturally variable behavioral responses to environmental oxygen, food, and other animals. C. elegans detects oxygen through soluble guanylate cyclase homologs (sGCs) and responds to it differently depending on the activity of the neuropeptide receptor NPR-1: npr-1(lf) and naturally isolated npr-1(215F) animals avoid high oxygen and aggregate in the presence of food; npr-1(215V) animals do not. We show here that hyperoxia avoidance integrates food with npr-1 activity through neuromodulation of a distributed oxygen-sensing network. Hyperoxia avoidance is stimulated by sGC-expressing oxygen-sensing neurons, nociceptive neurons, and ADF sensory neurons. In npr-1(215V) animals, the switch from weak aerotaxis on food to strong aerotaxis in its absence requires close regulation of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the ADF neurons; high levels of ADF serotonin promote hyperoxia avoidance. In npr-1(lf) animals, food regulation is masked by increased activity of the oxygen-sensing neurons. Hyperoxia avoidance is also regulated by the neuronal TGF-? homolog DAF-7, a secreted mediator of crowding and stress responses. DAF-7 inhibits serotonin synthesis in ADF, suggesting that ADF serotonin is a convergence point for regulation of hyperoxia avoidance. Coalitions of neurons that promote and repress hyperoxia avoidance generate a subtle and flexible response to environmental oxygen. PMID:16903785

  20. A distributed chemosensory circuit for oxygen preference in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Chang, Andy J; Chronis, Nikolas; Karow, David S; Marletta, Michael A; Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2006-09-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has complex, naturally variable behavioral responses to environmental oxygen, food, and other animals. C. elegans detects oxygen through soluble guanylate cyclase homologs (sGCs) and responds to it differently depending on the activity of the neuropeptide receptor NPR-1: npr-1(lf) and naturally isolated npr-1(215F) animals avoid high oxygen and aggregate in the presence of food; npr-1(215V) animals do not. We show here that hyperoxia avoidance integrates food with npr-1 activity through neuromodulation of a distributed oxygen-sensing network. Hyperoxia avoidance is stimulated by sGC-expressing oxygen-sensing neurons, nociceptive neurons, and ADF sensory neurons. In npr-1(215V) animals, the switch from weak aerotaxis on food to strong aerotaxis in its absence requires close regulation of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the ADF neurons; high levels of ADF serotonin promote hyperoxia avoidance. In npr-1(lf) animals, food regulation is masked by increased activity of the oxygen-sensing neurons. Hyperoxia avoidance is also regulated by the neuronal TGF-beta homolog DAF-7, a secreted mediator of crowding and stress responses. DAF-7 inhibits serotonin synthesis in ADF, suggesting that ADF serotonin is a convergence point for regulation of hyperoxia avoidance. Coalitions of neurons that promote and repress hyperoxia avoidance generate a subtle and flexible response to environmental oxygen. PMID:16903785

  1. Gene duplications and genetic redundancy in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Woollard, Alison

    2005-01-01

    Evolutionary innovation requires genetic raw materials upon which selection can act. The duplication of genes is of fundamental importance in providing such raw materials. Gene duplications are very widespread in C. elegans and appear to arise more frequently than in either Drosophila or yeast. It has been proposed that the rate of duplication of a gene is of the same order of magnitude as the rate of mutation per nucleotide site, emphasising the enormous potential that gene duplication has for generating substrates for evolutionary change. The fate of duplicated genes is discussed. Complete functional redundancy seems unstable in the long term. Most models require that equality amongst duplicated genes must be disrupted if they are to be preserved. There are various ways of achieving inequality, involving either the nonfunctionalization of one copy, or one copy acquiring some novel, beneficial function, or both copies becoming partially compromised so that both copies are required to provide the overall function that was previously provided by the single ancestral gene. Examples of C. elegans gene duplications that appear to have followed each of these pathways are considered. PMID:18023122

  2. Caenorhabditis elegans num-1 Negatively Regulates Endocytic Recycling

    PubMed Central

    Nilsson, Lars; Conradt, Barbara; Ruaud, Anne-Françoise; Chen, Carlos Chih-Hsiung; Hatzold, Julia; Bessereau, Jean-Louis; Grant, Barth D.; Tuck, Simon

    2008-01-01

    Much of the material taken into cells by endocytosis is rapidly returned to the plasma membrane by the endocytic recycling pathway. Although recycling is vital for the correct localization of cell membrane receptors and lipids, the molecular mechanisms that regulate recycling are only partially understood. Here we show that in Caenorhabditis elegans endocytic recycling is inhibited by NUM-1A, the nematode Numb homolog. NUM-1A?GFP fusion protein is localized to the baso-lateral surfaces of many polarized epithelial cells, including the hypodermis and the intestine. We show that increased NUM-1A levels cause morphological defects in these cells similar to those caused by loss-of-function mutations in rme-1, a positive regulator of recycling in both C. elegans and mammals. We describe the isolation of worms lacking num-1A activity and show that, consistent with a model in which NUM-1A negatively regulates recycling in the intestine, loss of num-1A function bypasses the requirement for RME-1. Genetic epistasis analysis with rab-10, which is required at an early part of the recycling pathway, suggests that loss of num-1A function does not affect the uptake of material by endocytosis but rather inhibits baso-lateral recycling downstream of rab-10. PMID:18493060

  3. Manganese disturbs metal and protein homeostasis in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Angeli, Suzanne; Barhydt, Tracy; Jacobs, Ross; Killilea, David W; Lithgow, Gordon J; Andersen, Julie K

    2014-10-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a debilitating motor and cognitive neurodegenerative disorder for which there is no cure. While aging is the major risk factor for developing PD, clear environmental risks have also been identified. Environmental exposure to the manganese (Mn) metal is a prominent risk factor for developing PD and occupational exposure to high levels of Mn can cause a syndrome known as manganism, which has symptoms that closely resemble PD. In this study, we developed a model of manganism in the environmentally tractable nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans. We find that, in addition to previously described modes of Mn toxicity, which primarily include mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress, Mn exposure also significantly antagonizes protein homeostasis, another key pathological feature associated with PD and many age-related neurodegenerative diseases. Mn treatment activates the ER unfolded protein response, severely exacerbates toxicity in a disease model of protein misfolding, and alters aggregate solubility. Further, aged animals, which have previously been shown to exhibit decreased protein homeostasis, are particularly susceptible to Mn toxicity when compared to young animals, indicating that the aging process sensitizes animals to metal toxicity. Mn exposure also significantly alters iron (Fe) and calcium (Ca) homeostasis, which is important for mitochondrial and ER health and which may further compound toxicity. These findings indicate that modeling manganism in C. elegans can provide a useful platform for identifying therapeutic interventions for ER stress, proteotoxicity, and age-dependent susceptibilities, key pathological features of PD and other related neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25057947

  4. Autophagy protects C. elegans against necrosis during Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Cheng-Gang; Ma, Yi-Cheng; Dai, Li-Li; Zhang, Ke-Qin

    2014-01-01

    Autophagy, a conserved pathway that delivers intracellular materials into lysosomes for degradation, is involved in development, aging, and a variety of diseases. Accumulating evidence demonstrates that autophagy plays a protective role against infectious diseases by diminishing intracellular pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, and parasites. However, the mechanism by which autophagy regulates innate immunity remains largely unknown. Here, we show that autophagy is involved in host defense against a pathogenic bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the metazoan Caenorhabditis elegans. P. aeruginosa infection induces autophagy via a conserved extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK). Intriguingly, impairment of autophagy does not influence the intestinal accumulation of P. aeruginosa, but instead induces intestinal necrosis. Inhibition of necrosis results in the survival of autophagy-deficient worms after P. aeruginosa infection. These findings reveal a previously unidentified role for autophagy in protection against necrosis triggered by pathogenic bacteria in C. elegans and implicate that such a function of autophagy may be conserved through the inflammatory response in diverse organisms. PMID:25114220

  5. Gait Modulation in C. elegans: An Integrated Neuromechanical Model

    PubMed Central

    Boyle, Jordan H.; Berri, Stefano; Cohen, Netta

    2012-01-01

    Equipped with its 302-cell nervous system, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans adapts its locomotion in different environments, exhibiting so-called swimming in liquids and crawling on dense gels. Recent experiments have demonstrated that the worm displays the full range of intermediate behaviors when placed in intermediate environments. The continuous nature of this transition strongly suggests that these behaviors all stem from modulation of a single underlying mechanism. We present a model of C. elegans forward locomotion that includes a neuromuscular control system that relies on a sensory feedback mechanism to generate undulations and is integrated with a physical model of the body and environment. We find that the model reproduces the entire swim-crawl transition, as well as locomotion in complex and heterogeneous environments. This is achieved with no modulatory mechanism, except via the proprioceptive response to the physical environment. Manipulations of the model are used to dissect the proposed pattern generation mechanism and its modulation. The model suggests a possible role for GABAergic D-class neurons in forward locomotion and makes a number of experimental predictions, in particular with respect to non-linearities in the model and to symmetry breaking between the neuromuscular systems on the ventral and dorsal sides of the body. PMID:22408616

  6. Mitoflash frequency in early adulthood predicts lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, En-Zhi; Song, Chun-Qing; Lin, Yuan; Zhang, Wen-Hong; Su, Pei-Fang; Liu, Wen-Yuan; Zhang, Pan; Xu, Jiejia; Lin, Na; Zhan, Cheng; Wang, Xianhua; Shyr, Yu; Cheng, Heping; Dong, Meng-Qiu

    2014-04-01

    It has been theorized for decades that mitochondria act as the biological clock of ageing, but the evidence is incomplete. Here we show a strong coupling between mitochondrial function and ageing by in vivo visualization of the mitochondrial flash (mitoflash), a frequency-coded optical readout reflecting free-radical production and energy metabolism at the single-mitochondrion level. Mitoflash activity in Caenorhabditis elegans pharyngeal muscles peaked on adult day 3 during active reproduction and on day 9 when animals started to die off. A plethora of genetic mutations and environmental factors inversely modified the lifespan and the day-3 mitoflash frequency. Even within an isogenic population, the day-3 mitoflash frequency was negatively correlated with the lifespan of individual animals. Furthermore, enhanced activity of the glyoxylate cycle contributed to the decreased day-3 mitoflash frequency and the longevity of daf-2 mutant animals. These results demonstrate that the day-3 mitoflash frequency is a powerful predictor of C. elegans lifespan across genetic, environmental and stochastic factors. They also support the notion that the rate of ageing, although adjustable in later life, has been set to a considerable degree before reproduction ceases.

  7. Phenazine derivatives cause proteotoxicity and stress in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Ray, Arpita; Rentas, Courtney; Caldwell, Guy A; Caldwell, Kim A

    2015-01-01

    It is widely recognized that bacterial metabolites have toxic effects in animal systems. Phenazines are a common bacterial metabolite within the redox-active exotoxin class. These compounds have been shown to be toxic to the soil invertebrate Caenorhabditis elegans with the capability of causing oxidative stress and lethality. Here we report that chronic, low-level exposure to three separate phenazine molecules (phenazine-1-carboxylic acid, pyocyanin and 1-hydroxyphenazine) upregulated ER stress response and enhanced expression of a superoxide dismutase reporter in vivo. Exposure to these molecules also increased protein misfolding of polyglutamine and ?-synuclein in the bodywall muscle cells of C. elegans. Exposure of worms to these phenazines caused additional sensitivity in dopamine neurons expressing wild-type ?-synuclein, indicating a possible defect in protein homeostasis. The addition of an anti-oxidant failed to rescue the neurotoxic and protein aggregation phenotypes caused by these compounds. Thus, increased production of superoxide radicals that occurs in whole animals in response to these phenazines appears independent from the toxicity phenotype observed. Collectively, these data provide cause for further consideration of the neurodegenerative impact of phenazines. PMID:25304539

  8. Phenazine derivatives cause proteotoxicity and stress in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Ray, Arpita; Rentas, Courtney; Caldwell, Guy A.; Caldwell, Kim A.

    2014-01-01

    It is widely recognized that bacterial metabolites have toxic effects in animal systems. Phenazines are a common bacterial metabolite within the redox-active exotoxin class. These compounds have been shown to be toxic to the soil invertebrate Caenorhabditis elegans with the capability of causing oxidative stress and lethality. Here we report that chronic, low-level exposure to three separate phenazine molecules (phenazine-1-carboxylic acid, pyocyanin and 1-hydroxyphenazine) upregulated ER stress response and enhanced expression of a superoxide dismutase reporter in vivo. Exposure to these molecules also increased of polyglutamine and ?-synuclein in the bodywall muscle cells of C. elegans. Exposure of worms to these phenazines caused additional sensitivity in dopamine neurons expressing wild-type ?-synuclein, indicating a possible defect in protein homeostasis. The addition of an anti-oxidant failed to rescue the neurotoxic and protein aggregation phenotypes caused by these compounds. Thus, increased production of superoxide radicals that occurs in whole animals in response to these phenazines appears independent from the toxicity phenotype observed. Collectively, these data provide cause for further consideration of the neurodegenerative impact of phenazines. PMID:25304539

  9. Autophagy protects C. elegans against necrosis during Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection.

    PubMed

    Zou, Cheng-Gang; Ma, Yi-Cheng; Dai, Li-Li; Zhang, Ke-Qin

    2014-08-26

    Autophagy, a conserved pathway that delivers intracellular materials into lysosomes for degradation, is involved in development, aging, and a variety of diseases. Accumulating evidence demonstrates that autophagy plays a protective role against infectious diseases by diminishing intracellular pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, and parasites. However, the mechanism by which autophagy regulates innate immunity remains largely unknown. Here, we show that autophagy is involved in host defense against a pathogenic bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the metazoan Caenorhabditis elegans. P. aeruginosa infection induces autophagy via a conserved extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK). Intriguingly, impairment of autophagy does not influence the intestinal accumulation of P. aeruginosa, but instead induces intestinal necrosis. Inhibition of necrosis results in the survival of autophagy-deficient worms after P. aeruginosa infection. These findings reveal a previously unidentified role for autophagy in protection against necrosis triggered by pathogenic bacteria in C. elegans and implicate that such a function of autophagy may be conserved through the inflammatory response in diverse organisms. PMID:25114220

  10. Genetics of Lipid-Storage Management in Caenorhabditis elegans Embryos.

    PubMed

    Schmökel, Verena; Memar, Nadin; Wiekenberg, Anne; Trotzmüller, Martin; Schnabel, Ralf; Döring, Frank

    2016-03-01

    Lipids play a pivotal role in embryogenesis as structural components of cellular membranes, as a source of energy, and as signaling molecules. On the basis of a collection of temperature-sensitive embryonic lethal mutants, a systematic database search, and a subsequent microscopic analysis of >300 interference RNA (RNAi)-treated/mutant worms, we identified a couple of evolutionary conserved genes associated with lipid storage in Caenorhabditis elegans embryos. The genes include cpl-1 (cathepsin L-like cysteine protease), ccz-1 (guanine nucleotide exchange factor subunit), and asm-3 (acid sphingomyelinase), which is closely related to the human Niemann-Pick disease-causing gene SMPD1. The respective mutant embryos accumulate enlarged droplets of neutral lipids (cpl-1) and yolk-containing lipid droplets (ccz-1) or have larger genuine lipid droplets (asm-3). The asm-3 mutant embryos additionally showed an enhanced resistance against C band ultraviolet (UV-C) light. Herein we propose that cpl-1, ccz-1, and asm-3 are genes required for the processing of lipid-containing droplets in C. elegans embryos. Owing to the high levels of conservation, the identified genes are also useful in studies of embryonic lipid storage in other organisms. PMID:26773047

  11. Ecotoxicological assessment of lanthanum with Caenorhabditis elegans in liquid medium.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Haifeng; He, Xiao; Bai, Wei; Guo, Xiaomei; Zhang, Zhiyong; Chai, Zhifang; Zhao, Yuliang

    2010-12-01

    With their widespread applications in industry, agriculture and many other fields, more and more rare earth elements (REEs) are getting into the environment, especially the aquatic systems. Therefore, understanding the aquatic ecotoxicity of REEs has become more and more important. In the present work, Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) was used as a test organism and life-cycle endpoints were chosen along with elemental assay to evaluate the aquatic toxicity of lanthanum (La), a representative of REEs. The results show La³+ had significant adverse effects on the growth and reproduction of worms above a concentration of 10 ?mol L?¹. The elemental mapping by microbeam synchrotron radiation X-ray fluorescence (?-SRXRF) illustrated how La treatment disturbed the metals distribution in the whole body of a single tiny nematode at lower levels. Our results suggested that the high-level REEs in some polluted water bodies would lead to an aquatic ecological crisis. The assessment we performed in the present work could be developed as a standardized test design for aquatic toxicological research. PMID:21510015

  12. Caenorhabditis elegans as a model for lysosomal storage disorders.

    PubMed

    de Voer, Gert; Peters, Dorien; Taschner, Peter E M

    2008-01-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is the simplest animal model available to study human disease. In this review, the worm homologues for the 58 human genes involved in lysosomal storage disorders and for 105 human genes associated with lysosomal function have been compiled. Most human genes had at least one worm homologue. In addition, the phenotypes of 147 mutants, in which these genes have been disrupted or knocked down, have been summarized and discussed. The phenotypic spectrum of worm models of lysosomal storage disorders varies from lethality to none obvious, with a large variety of intermediate phenotypes. The genetic power of C. elegans provides a means to identify genes involved in specific processes with relative ease. The overview of potential lysosomal phenotypes presented here might be used as a starting point for the phenotypic characterization of newly developed knock-out models or for the design of genetic screens selecting for loss or gain of suitable knock-out model phenotypes. Screens for genes involved in lysosomal biogenesis and function have been performed successfully resulting in the cup and glo mutants, but screens involving subtle phenotypes are likely to be difficult. PMID:18501720

  13. Starvation-induced collective behavior in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Artyukhin, Alexander B.; Yim, Joshua J.; Cheong Cheong, Mi; Avery, Leon

    2015-01-01

    We describe a new type of collective behavior in C. elegans nematodes, aggregation of starved L1 larvae. Shortly after hatching in the absence of food, L1 larvae arrest their development and disperse in search for food. In contrast, after two or more days without food, the worms change their behavior—they start to aggregate. The aggregation requires a small amount of ethanol or acetate in the environment. In the case of ethanol, it has to be metabolized, which requires functional alcohol dehydrogenase sodh-1. The resulting acetate is used in de novo fatty acid synthesis, and some of the newly made fatty acids are then derivatized to glycerophosphoethanolamides and released into the surrounding medium. We examined several other Caenorhabditis species and found an apparent correlation between propensity of starved L1s to aggregate and density dependence of their survival in starvation. Aggregation locally concentrates worms and may help the larvae to survive long starvation. This work demonstrates how presence of ethanol or acetate, relatively abundant small molecules in the environment, induces collective behavior in C. elegans associated with different survival strategies. PMID:26013573

  14. Biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan from C. elegans cohort.

    PubMed

    Suda, Hitoshi

    2014-09-12

    Lifespan among individuals ranges widely in organisms from yeast to mammals, even in an isogenic cohort born in a nearly uniform environment. Needless to say, genetic and environmental factors are essential for aging and lifespan, but in addition, a third factor or the existence of a stochastic element must be reflected in aging and lifespan. An essential point is that lifespan or aging is an unpredictable phenomenon. The present study focuses on elucidating the biophysical and biological meanings of healthspan that latently indwells a stochastic nature. To perform this purpose, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans served as a model animal. C. elegans fed a healthy food had an extended healthspan as compared to those fed a conventional diet. Then, utilizing this phenomenon, we clarified a mechanism of healthspan extension by measuring the single-worm ATP and estimating the ATP noise (or the variability of the ATP content) among individual worms and by quantitatively analyzing biodemographic data with the lifespan equation that was derived from a fluctuation theory. PMID:25130468

  15. Mitochondrial efficiency is increased in axenically cultured Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Castelein, Natascha; Muschol, Michael; Dhondt, Ineke; Cai, Huaihan; De Vos, Winnok H; Dencher, Norbert A; Braeckman, Bart P

    2014-08-01

    Culturing Caenorhabditis elegans in axenic medium leads to a twofold increase in lifespan and considering the similar phenotypical traits with dietary restricted animals, it is referred to as axenic dietary restriction (ADR). The free radical theory of aging has suggested a pivotal role for mitochondria in the aging process and previous findings established that culture in axenic medium increases metabolic rate. We asked whether axenic culture induces changes in mitochondrial functionality of C. elegans. We show that ADR induces increased electron transport chain (ETC) capacity, enhanced coupling efficiency and reduced leakiness of the mitochondria of young adult worms but not a decrease of ROS production capacity and in vivo H2O2 levels. The age-dependent increase in leak respiration and decrease in coupling efficiency is repressed under ADR conditions. Although ADR mitochondria experience a decrease in ETC capacity with age, they succeed to maintain highly efficient and well-coupled function compared to fully fed controls. This might be mediated by combination of a limited increase in supercomplex abundance and decreased individual CIV abundance, facilitating electron transport and ultimately leading to increased mitochondrial efficiency. PMID:24556280

  16. Lifespan extension by conditions that inhibit translation in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Malene; Taubert, Stefan; Crawford, Douglas; Libina, Nataliya; Lee, Seung-Jae; Kenyon, Cynthia

    2007-02-01

    Many conditions that shift cells from states of nutrient utilization and growth to states of cell maintenance extend lifespan. We have carried out a systematic lifespan analysis of conditions that inhibit protein synthesis. We find that reducing the levels of ribosomal proteins, ribosomal-protein S6 kinase or translation-initiation factors increases the lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans. These perturbations, as well as inhibition of the nutrient sensor target of rapamycin (TOR), which is known to increase lifespan, all increase thermal-stress resistance. Thus inhibiting translation may extend lifespan by shifting cells to physiological states that favor maintenance and repair. Interestingly, different types of translation inhibition lead to one of two mutually exclusive outputs, one that increases lifespan and stress resistance through the transcription factor DAF-16/FOXO, and one that increases lifespan and stress resistance independently of DAF-16. Our findings link TOR, but not sir-2.1, to the longevity response induced by dietary restriction (DR) in C. elegans, and they suggest that neither TOR inhibition nor DR extends lifespan simply by reducing protein synthesis. PMID:17266679

  17. The Genetics of Levamisole Resistance in the Nematode CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, James A.; Wu, C.-H.; Berg, Howard; Levine, Joseph H.

    1980-01-01

    We have characterized a small group of genes (13 loci) in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans that, when mutated, confer resistance to the potent anthelmintic levamisole. Mutants at the 7 loci conferring the most extreme resistance generally possess almost identical visible and pharmacological phenotypes: uncoordinated motor behavior, most severe in early larval life, extreme resistance to cholinergic agonists and sensitivity to hypo-osmotic shock. Mutants with exceptional phenotypes suggest possible functions for several of the resistance loci. The most extreme mutants can readily be selected by their drug resistance (211 mutants, as many as 74 alleles of one gene). The more common resistance loci are likely to be unessential genes, while loci identified by only a few alleles may be essential genes or genes conferring resistance only when mutated in a special way. We propose that these mutants represent a favorable system for understanding how a small group of related genes function in a simple animal. The extreme drug resistance of these mutants makes them useful tools for the genetic manipulation of C. elegans. And, as the most resistant class of mutants might lack pharmacologically functional acetylcholine receptors (Lewis et al. 1980), these mutants may also be of some neurobiological significance. PMID:7203008

  18. A novel mode of ecdysozoan growth in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Knight, Christopher G; Patel, Mavji N; Azevedo, Ricardo B R; Leroi, Armand M

    2002-01-01

    Whereas growth in many ecdysozoa is associated with only molting, larval growth in nematodes, specifically Caenorhabditis elegans, is thought to be continuous and exponential. However, this has never been closely investigated. Here we report several detailed studies of growth in wild-type and dwarf C. elegans strains. We find that apparent exponential growth between hatching and adulthood comprises a series of linear phases, one per larval stage, with the linear growth rate increasing at successive molts. Although most structures grow continuously, the buccal cavity does not; instead, it grows saltationally at molts, like arthropod structures. We speculate that these saltational changes in mouth size permit changes in growth rate and that molting exists in nematodes to facilitate rapid growth. We study the cellular basis of this growth in the hypodermis. At each larval stage, lateral seam cells produce daughters that fuse with hyp7, a syncytium covering most of the worm. We find that seam cells and fusing daughter cells obtain larger sizes in successive molts. The total seam cell volume remains constant relative to the size of the worm. However, fusing daughter cells contributes only a very small amount directly to hypodermal growth, suggesting that most hyp7 growth must be intrinsic. Thus, dwarfism mutations studied principally act via adult syncytial growth, with cell size being near normal in both dbl-1 and dpy-2 mutant worms. We speculate that the main function of seam cell proliferation may be to supply the hypodermis with additional genomes for the purpose of growth. PMID:11871396

  19. Mutator Phenotype of Caenorhabditis elegans DNA Damage Checkpoint Mutants

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Jasper; Lowden, Mia; Clejan, Iuval; Tzoneva, Monika; Thomas, James H.; Hodgkin, Jonathan; Ahmed, Shawn

    2006-01-01

    DNA damage response proteins identify sites of DNA damage and signal to downstream effectors that orchestrate either apoptosis or arrest of the cell cycle and DNA repair. The C. elegans DNA damage response mutants mrt-2, hus-1, and clk-2(mn159) displayed 8- to 15-fold increases in the frequency of spontaneous mutation in their germlines. Many of these mutations were small- to medium-sized deletions, some of which had unusual sequences at their breakpoints such as purine-rich tracts or direct or inverted repeats. Although DNA-damage-induced apoptosis is abrogated in the mrt-2, hus-1, and clk-2 mutant backgrounds, lack of the apoptotic branch of the DNA damage response pathway in cep-1/p53, ced-3, and ced-4 mutants did not result in a Mutator phenotype. Thus, DNA damage checkpoint proteins suppress the frequency of mutation by ensuring that spontaneous DNA damage is accurately repaired in C. elegans germ cells. Although DNA damage response defects that predispose humans to cancer are known to result in large-scale chromosome aberrations, our results suggest that small- to medium-sized deletions may also play roles in the development of cancer. PMID:16951081

  20. 3-D Worm Tracker for Freely Moving C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Namseop; Pyo, Jaeyeon; Lee, Seung-Jae; Je, Jung Ho

    2013-01-01

    The manner in which the nervous system regulates animal behaviors in natural environments is a fundamental issue in biology. To address this question, C. elegans has been widely used as a model animal for the analysis of various animal behaviors. Previous behavioral assays have been limited to two-dimensional (2-D) environments, confining the worm motion to a planar substrate that does not reflect three-dimensional (3-D) natural environments such as rotting fruits or soil. Here, we develop a 3-D worm tracker (3DWT) for freely moving C. elegans in 3-D environments, based on a stereoscopic configuration. The 3DWT provides us with a quantitative trajectory, including the position and movement direction of the worm in 3-D. The 3DWT is also capable of recording and visualizing postures of the moving worm in 3-D, which are more complex than those in 2-D. Our 3DWT affords new opportunities for understanding the nervous system function that regulates animal behaviors in natural 3-D environments. PMID:23437394

  1. Starvation-induced collective behavior in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Artyukhin, Alexander B; Yim, Joshua J; Cheong Cheong, Mi; Avery, Leon

    2015-01-01

    We describe a new type of collective behavior in C. elegans nematodes, aggregation of starved L1 larvae. Shortly after hatching in the absence of food, L1 larvae arrest their development and disperse in search for food. In contrast, after two or more days without food, the worms change their behavior--they start to aggregate. The aggregation requires a small amount of ethanol or acetate in the environment. In the case of ethanol, it has to be metabolized, which requires functional alcohol dehydrogenase sodh-1. The resulting acetate is used in de novo fatty acid synthesis, and some of the newly made fatty acids are then derivatized to glycerophosphoethanolamides and released into the surrounding medium. We examined several other Caenorhabditis species and found an apparent correlation between propensity of starved L1s to aggregate and density dependence of their survival in starvation. Aggregation locally concentrates worms and may help the larvae to survive long starvation. This work demonstrates how presence of ethanol or acetate, relatively abundant small molecules in the environment, induces collective behavior in C. elegans associated with different survival strategies. PMID:26013573

  2. Computer-Assisted Transgenesis of Caenorhabditis elegans for Deep Phenotyping

    PubMed Central

    Gilleland, Cody L.; Falls, Adam T.; Noraky, James; Heiman, Maxwell G.; Yanik, Mehmet F.

    2015-01-01

    A major goal in the study of human diseases is to assign functions to genes or genetic variants. The model organism Caenorhabditis elegans provides a powerful tool because homologs of many human genes are identifiable, and large collections of genetic vectors and mutant strains are available. However, the delivery of such vector libraries into mutant strains remains a long-standing experimental bottleneck for phenotypic analysis. Here, we present a computer-assisted microinjection platform to streamline the production of transgenic C. elegans with multiple vectors for deep phenotyping. Briefly, animals are immobilized in a temperature-sensitive hydrogel using a standard multiwell platform. Microinjections are then performed under control of an automated microscope using precision robotics driven by customized computer vision algorithms. We demonstrate utility by phenotyping the morphology of 12 neuronal classes in six mutant backgrounds using combinations of neuron-type-specific fluorescent reporters. This technology can industrialize the assignment of in vivo gene function by enabling large-scale transgenic engineering. PMID:26163188

  3. Magnetosensitive neurons mediate geomagnetic orientation in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Vidal-Gadea, Andrés; Ward, Kristi; Beron, Celia; Ghorashian, Navid; Gokce, Sertan; Russell, Joshua; Truong, Nicholas; Parikh, Adhishri; Gadea, Otilia; Ben-Yakar, Adela; Pierce-Shimomura, Jonathan

    2015-01-01

    Many organisms spanning from bacteria to mammals orient to the earth's magnetic field. For a few animals, central neurons responsive to earth-strength magnetic fields have been identified; however, magnetosensory neurons have yet to be identified in any animal. We show that the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans orients to the earth's magnetic field during vertical burrowing migrations. Well-fed worms migrated up, while starved worms migrated down. Populations isolated from around the world, migrated at angles to the magnetic vector that would optimize vertical translation in their native soil, with northern- and southern-hemisphere worms displaying opposite migratory preferences. Magnetic orientation and vertical migrations required the TAX-4 cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channel in the AFD sensory neuron pair. Calcium imaging showed that these neurons respond to magnetic fields even without synaptic input. C. elegans may have adapted magnetic orientation to simplify their vertical burrowing migration by reducing the orientation task from three dimensions to one. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07493.001 PMID:26083711

  4. Anti-adipogenic effects of extracts of Ficus deltoidea var. deltoidea and var. angustifolia on 3T3-L1 adipocytes*

    PubMed Central

    Woon, Shiau Mei; Seng, Yew Wei; Ling, Anna Pick Kiong; Chye, Soi Moi; Koh, Rhun Yian

    2014-01-01

    Objective: This study examined the anti-adipogenic effects of extracts of Ficus deltoidea var. deltoidia and var. angustifolia, a natural slimming aid, on 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Methods: Methanol and water extracts of leaves of the F. deltoidea varieties were analyzed to determine their total flavonoid content (TFC) and total phenolic content (TPC), respectively. The study was initiated by determining the maximum non-toxic dose (MNTD) of the methanol and water extracts for 3T3-L1 preadipocytes. Possible anti-adipogenic effects were then examined by treating 2-d post confluent 3T3-L1 preadipocytes with either methanol extract or water extract at MNTD and half MNTD (½MNTD), after which the preadipocytces were induced to form mature adipocytes. Visualisation and quantification of lipid content in mature adipocytes were carried out through oil red O staining and measurement of optical density (OD) at 520 nm, respectively. Results: The TFCs of the methanol extracts were 1.36 and 1.97 g quercetin equivalents (QE)/100 g dry weight (DW), while the TPCs of the water extracts were 5.61 and 2.73 g gallic acid equivalents (GAE)/100 g DW for var. deltoidea and var. angustilofia, respectively. The MNTDs determined for methanol and water extracts were (300.0±28.3) and (225.0±21.2) ?g/ml, respectively, for var. deltoidea, while much lower MNTDs [(60.0±2.0) ?g/ml for methanol extracts and (8.0±1.0) ?g/ml for water extracts] were recorded for var. angustifolia. Studies revealed that the methanol extracts of both varieties and the water extracts of var. angustifolia at either MNTD or ½MNTD significantly inhibited the maturation of preadipocytes. Conclusions: The inhibition of the formation of mature adipocytes indicated that leaf extracts of F. deltoidea could have potential anti-obesity effects. PMID:24599694

  5. [Correlation between distribution of rhizospheric microorganisms and contents of steroidal saponins of Paris polyphylla var. yunnanensis].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Nong; Qi, Wen-hua; Xiao, Guo-sheng; Ding, Bo; Zhang, Hua; Guo, Dong-qin; Shen, Wei

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, the varying pattern of the amount of rhizospheric microorganisms, including bacteria, actinomycetes and fungus, was observed during the cultivation of Paris polyphylla var. yunnanensis. And the correlations between number of rhizospheric microorganisms and the quality of P. polyphylla var. yunnanensis were also studied. The results showed that the rhizospheric microorganism source of P. polyphylla var. yunnanensis was rich. The distribution of rhizospheric microorganisms (soil bacteria, fungus, actinomycetes, potassium-solubilizing bacteria, inorganic phosphorus-solubilizing bacteria, organic phosphorus-solubilizing bacteria) collected from different origin places existed significant difference (P < 0.05). The varying pattern for the amount of rhizospheric microorganisms was showed as following: the amount of bacteria > the amount of actinomycetes > the amount of fungus. The medicinal quality of P. polyphylla var. yunnanensis was influenced by their habits, and the increase of cultivation years caused the obvious decrease of the quality of P. polyphylla var. yunnanensis. Therefore, the increase of cultivation years will cause the variation of the soil micro-ecology flora, and decrease the nutrient absorption and the utilization of P. polyphylla var. yunnanensis, which will make the decrease of the medical quality of P. polyphylla var. yunnanensis. PMID:26226744

  6. Utilization of Leek (Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum) for inulinase production.

    PubMed

    Tasar, Ozden Canli; Erdal, Serkan; Algur, Omer Faruk

    2015-08-18

    Inulinase production by Rhodotorula glutinis was carried out in this study, using leek (Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum) as an alternative carbon source due to its high inulin content and easy availability. Taguchi orthogonal array (OA) design of experiment (DOE) was used to optimize fermentation conditions. For this purpose, five influential factors (leek concentration, pH, incubation temperature, agitation speed, and fermentation time) related to inulinase production were selected at four convenient levels. The results showed that maximum inulinase activity was obtained as 30.89 U/mL, which was close to the predicted result (30.24 U/mL). To validate the obtained results, analysis of variance (ANOVA) was employed. Consequently, leek has a great potential as an effective and economical carbon source for inulinase production, and the use of Taguchi DOE enhanced enzyme activity about 2.87-fold when compared with the unoptimized condition. PMID:25036570

  7. Steroidal saponins from the flowers of Dioscorea bulbifera var. sativa.

    PubMed

    Tapondjou, Léon Azefack; Jenett-Siems, Kristina; Böttger, Stefan; Melzig, Matthias F

    2013-11-01

    Eleven steroidal saponins, dioscoreanosides A-K, along with five known congeners, were isolated from the flowers of Dioscorea bulbifera var. sativa. Their structures were established by extensive NMR experiments in conjunction with mass spectrometry. The isolated compounds were tested for cytotoxicity against urinary bladder carcinoma cells (ECV-304 cells). Our results revealed a moderate activity for spiroconazol A (15), pennogenin 3-O-α-l-rhamnopyranosyl-(1→4)-α-l-rhamnopyranosyl-(1→4)-[α-l-rhamnopyranosyl-(1→2)]-β-d-glucopyranoside (12), and 26-O-ß-d-glucopyranosyl-(25R)-5-en-furost-3ß,17α,22α,26-tetraol-3-O-α-l-rhamnopyranosyl-(1→4)-α-l-rhamnopyranosyl-(1→4)-[α-l-rhamnopyranosyl-(1→2)]-β-d-glucopyranoside (13). PMID:23969106

  8. [Flavonoid constituents from herbs of Sarcopyramis bodinieri var. delicata].

    PubMed

    Wan, Chunpeng; Zheng, Xiao; Chen, Haifeng; Zou, Xiuhong; Song, Zirong; Zhou, Shouran; Qiu, Yan

    2009-01-01

    Phytochemical studies of the the herb Sarcopyramis bodinieri var. delicate (Melastomataceae) have been carried out. The compounds were separated by repeated D101 macroporous adsorption resin column combined with Sephadex LH-20, ODS, and silica gel chromatgrophy. The structures were identified on the basis of extensive spectroscopic data analysis, and by comparison of their spectral data with those reported. Eight flavonoid compounds isolated from the ethyl acetate extract was identified as isorhamnetin (1), quercetin (2), isorhamnetin-3-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside (3), quercetin-3-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside (4), isorhamnetin-3-O-(6"-acetyl)-beta-D-glucopyranoside (5), isorhamnetin-3-O-(2"-acetyl)-beta-D-glucopyranoside (6), quercetin-3-O-(6"-acetyl)-beta-D-glucopyranoside (7), and quercetin- 3-O-(6"-O-E-p-coumaroyl)-beta-D-glucopyranoside (8). All of the compounds were separated from the genus of Sarcopyramis for the first time. PMID:19385178

  9. Deterioration of expanded polystyrene caused by Aureobasidium pullulans var. melanogenum.

    PubMed

    Castiglia, Valeria C; Kuhar, Francisco

    2015-01-01

    An expanded-polystyrene factory located in northern Buenos Aires reported unusual dark spots causing esthetic damage in their production. A fungal strain forming black-olive colonies on extract malt agar medium was isolated from the damaged material and identified as Aureobasidium pullullans var. melanogenum. This fungus is particularly known for its capacity to produce hydrolytic enzymes and a biodegradable extracellular polysaccharide known as pullulan, which is used in the manufacture of packaging material for food and medicine. Laboratory tests were conducted to characterize its growth parameters. It was found that the organism was resistant to a wide range of pHs but did not survive at temperatures over 65°C. The proposed action plan includes drying of the material prior to packaging and disinfection of the machinery used in the manufacturing process and of the silos used for raw material storage. PMID:26165967

  10. Antiplasmodial sesquiterpenes from the seeds of Salacia longipes var. camerunensis.

    PubMed

    Mba'ning, Brice M; Lenta, Bruno N; Noungoué, Diderot T; Antheaume, Cyril; Fongang, Yanick F; Ngouela, Silvère A; Boyom, Fabrice F; Rosenthal, Philip J; Tsamo, Etienne; Sewald, Norbert; Laatsch, Hartmut

    2013-12-01

    Phytochemical investigation of the seeds of Salacia longipes var. camerunensis led to the isolation of four sesquiterpenoid derivatives, salaterpene A (1) (1?,2?,8?-triacetoxy-6?,9?-dibenzoyloxy-4?-hydroxy-dihydro-?-agarofuran), salaterpene B (2) (1?,2?,8?-triacetoxy-9?-benzoyloxy-6?-cinnamoyloxy-4?-hydroxy-dihydro-?-agarofuran), salaterpene C (3) (1?,2?-diacetoxy-6?,9?-dibenzoyloxy-4?-hydroxy-dihydro-?-agarofuran) and salaterpene D (4) (2?-acetoxy-1?,6?-dibenzoyloxy-4?-hydroxy-9?-nicotinoyloxy-dihydro-?-agarofuran) together with two known compounds (5 and 6). The structures of the compounds were established by means of NMR spectroscopy. Compounds 1-4 and 6 were tested in vitro for their antiplasmodial activity against Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine-resistant strain W2. All the tested compounds exhibited a moderate potency with IC50 below 2.7 ?M. PMID:23863332

  11. Secondary metabolites from Opuntia ficus-indica var. saboten.

    PubMed

    Saleem, Muhammad; Kim, Hyoung Ja; Han, Chang Kyun; Jin, Changbae; Lee, Yong Sup

    2006-07-01

    A butanol fraction, from the methanolic extract of Opuntia ficus-indica var. saboten, on purification either by preparative TLC or reversed phase HPLC, yielded three chemical components: isorhamnetin 3-O-(6''-O-E-feruloyl)neohesperidoside (1), (6R)-9,10-dihydroxy-4,7-megastigmadien-3-one-9-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside (2) and (6S)-9,10-dihydroxy-4,7-megastigmadien-3-one-9-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside (3) along with 15 known compounds. Structures of compounds (1-3) were elucidated by aid of spectroscopic analyses. The absolute stereochemistry in compounds 2 and 3 was established with the help of CD data analysis and comparison with the literature data. In a DPPH radical scavenging assay, compound 1 showed moderate inhibitory activity (IC50 = 45.58 microg/ml). PMID:16762382

  12. [Chemical constituents from leaves of Rhododendron rubiginosum var rubiginosum].

    PubMed

    Yang, Yong-Xun; Yan, Yong-Ming; Tao, Ming; Luo, Qian; Dong, Xiao-Ping

    2013-03-01

    Thirteen compounds were isolated from the leaves of Rhododendron rubiginosum var. rubiginosum by various chromatographic techniques. On the basis of spectroscopic data, their structures were elucidated as 3,9-dihydroxy-megastigma-5-ene (1), 3 beta-hydroxy-5alpha ,6 alpha-epoxy-7-megastigmen-9-one (2), loliolide (3), ursolic acid(4), 2 alpha, 3 beta-dihydroxy-urs-12-en-28-oic acid (5), 2 alpha, 3 beta,23-trihydroxy-urs-12-en-28-oic acid (6), 7,9-dimethoxyrhododendrol (7), 7-methoxyrhododendrol (8), zingerone (9), isofraxidin (10), scopoletin (11), (+)-pinoresinol (12) and 3'-O-demethylepipinorisenol (13). All compounds were isolated from this plant for the first time, and compounds 1-3, 7-9, and 11-13 were isolated from the genus Rhododendron for the first time. PMID:23717963

  13. Podocarpane, isopimarane, and abietane diterpenoids from Isodon lophanthoides var. graciliflorus.

    PubMed

    Liang, Yaoguang; Xie, Haihui; Wu, Ping; Jiang, Yueming; Wei, Xiaoyi

    2013-02-15

    Four new diterpenoids including two podocarpanes, graciliflorins A (1) and B (2), an isopimarane acetal, graciliflorin C (3), and a rearranged abietane, graciliflorin D (4) were isolated from the aerial parts of Isodon lophanthoides var. graciliflorus (Lamiaceae) along with podocarpa-8,11,13-triene-3?,13-diol (5) and micranthin B (6). Their structures were elucidated based on the spectroscopic data. The in vitro cytotoxicity of compounds 1-4 and 6 against human carcinoma A549, MCF-7, and HeLa cell lines were evaluated using the MTT colourimetric assay. Micranthin B (6) showed moderate activity against all the cells with IC(50) values of 16.29, 18.20, and 22.25 ?M, while compounds 1-4 were inactive (IC(50)>50 ?g/ml). PMID:23194512

  14. Microsatellite markers for Senna spectabilis var. excelsa (Caesalpinioideae, Fabaceae)1

    PubMed Central

    López-Roberts, M. Cristina; Barbosa, Ariane R.; Paganucci de Queiroz, Luciano; van den Berg, Cássio

    2016-01-01

    Premise of the study: Senna spectabilis var. excelsa (Fabaceae) is a South and Central American tree of great ecological importance and one of the most common species in several sites of seasonally dry forests. Our goal was to develop microsatellite markers to assess the genetic diversity and structure of this species. Methods and Results: We designed and assessed 53 loci obtained from a microsatellite-enriched library and an intersimple sequence repeat library. Fourteen loci were polymorphic, and they presented a total of 39 alleles in a sample of 61 individuals from six populations. The mean values of observed and expected heterozygosities were 0.355 and 0.479, respectively. Polymorphism information content was 0.390 and the Shannon index was 0.778. Conclusions: Polymorphism information content and Shannon index indicate that at least nine of the 14 microsatellite loci developed are moderate to highly informative, and potentially useful for population genetic studies in this species. PMID:26819856

  15. Cloning of the Repertoire of Individual Plasmodium falciparum var Genes Using Transformation Associated Recombination (TAR)

    PubMed Central

    Schmid, Christoph D.; Bühlmann, Tobias; Louis, Edward J.; Beck, Hans-Peter

    2011-01-01

    One of the major virulence factors of the malaria causing parasite is the Plasmodium falciparum encoded erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1). It is translocated to It the membrane of infected erythrocytes and expressed from approximately 60 var genes in a mutually exclusive manner. Switching of var genes allows the parasite to alter functional and antigenic properties of infected erythrocytes, to escape the immune defense and to establish chronic infections. We have developed an efficient method for isolating VAR genes from telomeric and other genome locations by adapting transformation-associated recombination (TAR) cloning, which can then be analyzed and sequenced. For this purpose, three plasmids each containing a homologous sequence representing the upstream regions of the group A, B, and C var genes and a sequence homologous to the conserved acidic terminal segment (ATS) of var genes were generated. Co-transfection with P. falciparum strain ITG2F6 genomic DNA in yeast cells yielded 200 TAR clones. The relative frequencies of clones from each group were not biased. Clones were screened by PCR, as well as Southern blotting, which revealed clones missed by PCR due to sequence mismatches with the primers. Selected clones were transformed into E. coli and further analyzed by RFLP and end sequencing. Physical analysis of 36 clones revealed 27 distinct types potentially representing 50% of the var gene repertoire. Three clones were selected for sequencing and assembled into single var gene containing contigs. This study demonstrates that it is possible to rapidly obtain the repertoire of var genes from P. falciparum within a single set of cloning experiments. This technique can be applied to individual isolates which will provide a detailed picture of the diversity of var genes in the field. This is a powerful tool to overcome the obstacles with cloning and assembly of multi-gene families by simultaneously cloning each member. PMID:21408186

  16. Evaluation of the influence of fullerenol on aging and stress resistance using Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Cong, Wenshu; Wang, Peng; Qu, Ying; Tang, Jinglong; Bai, Ru; Zhao, Yuliang; Chunying Chen; Bi, Xiaolin

    2015-02-01

    Fullerene derivatives have attracted extensive attention in biomedical fields and polyhydroxyl fullerene (fullerenol), a water-soluble fullerene derivative, is demonstrated as a powerful antioxidant. To further assess their anti-aging and anti-stress potential, we employed Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) as a model organism to evaluate the effects of fullerenol on the growth, development, behavior and anti-stress ability in vivo. The data show that fullerenol has no obviously toxic effect on nematodes and can delay C. elegans aging progress under normal condition. Further studies demonstrate that fullerenol attenuates endogenous levels of reactive oxygen species and provides protection to C. elegans under stress conditions by up-regulating stress-related genes in a DAF-16 depend manner and improving lifespan. In summary, our data suggest that fullerenol might be a safe and reasonable anti-aging candidate with great potential in vivo. PMID:25542795

  17. Insulin signaling genes modulate nicotine-induced behavioral responses in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Wescott, Seth A; Ronan, Elizabeth A; Xu, X Z Shawn

    2016-02-01

    Insulin signaling has been suggested to modulate nicotine dependence, but the underlying genetic evidence has been lacking. Here, we used the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, to investigate whether genetic alterations in the insulin signaling pathway affect behavioral responses to nicotine. For this, we challenged drug-naive C. elegans with an acute dose of nicotine (100??mol/l) while recording changes in their locomotion speed. Although nicotine treatment stimulated locomotion speed in wild-type C. elegans, the same treatment reduced locomotion speed in mutants defective in insulin signaling. This phenotype could be suppressed by mutations in daf-16, a gene encoding a FOXO transcription factor that acts downstream of insulin signaling. Our data suggest that insulin signaling genes, daf-2, age-1, pdk-1, akt-1, and akt-2, modulate behavioral responses to nicotine in C. elegans, indicating a genetic link between nicotine behavior and insulin signaling. PMID:26317299

  18. A Movable Surface: Formation of Yersinia sp. Biofilms on Motile Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Li; Darby, Creg

    2004-01-01

    Bubonic plague is transmitted by fleas whose feeding is blocked by a mass of Yersinia pestis in the digestive tract. Y. pestis and the closely related Y. pseudotuberculosis also block the feeding of Caenorhabditis elegans by forming a biofilm on the nematode head. C. elegans mutants with severe motility defects acquire almost no biofilm, indicating that normal animals accumulate the biofilm matrix as they move through a Yersinia lawn. Using the lectin wheat germ agglutinin as a probe, we show that the matrix on C. elegans contains carbohydrate produced by Yersinia. The carbohydrate is present in bacterial lawns prior to addition of nematodes, indicating that biofilm formation does not involve signaling between the two organisms. Furthermore, biofilm accumulation depends on continuous C. elegans exposure to a lawn of Yersinia bacteria. PMID:15262945

  19. The neural circuits and sensory channels mediating harsh touch sensation in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Li, Wei; Kang, Lijun; Piggott, Beverly J.; Feng, Zhaoyang; Shawn Xu, X. Z.

    2011-01-01

    Most animals can distinguish two distinct types of touch stimuli: gentle (innocuous) and harsh (noxious/painful) touch, but the underlying mechanisms are not well understood. C. elegans is a highly successful model for the study of gentle touch sensation. However, little is known about harsh touch sensation in this organism. Here we characterize harsh touch sensation in C. elegans. We show that C. elegans exhibits differential behavioral responses to harsh touch and gentle touch. Laser ablations identify distinct sets of sensory neurons and interneurons required for harsh touch sensation at different body segments. Optogenetic stimulation of the circuitry can drive behavior. Patch-clamp recordings reveal that TRP family and amiloride-sensitive Na+ channels mediate touch-evoked currents in different sensory neurons. Our work identifies the neural circuits and characterizes the sensory channels mediating harsh touch sensation in C. elegans, establishing it as a genetic model for studying this sensory modality. PMID:21587232

  20. Communication between oocytes and somatic cells regulates volatile pheromone production in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Leighton, Daniel H. W.; Choe, Andrea; Wu, Shannon Y; Sternberg, Paul W.

    2014-01-01

    Males of the androdioecious species Caenorhabditis elegans are more likely to attempt to mate with and successfully inseminate C. elegans hermaphrodites that do not concurrently harbor sperm. Although a small number of genes have been implicated in this effect, the mechanism by which it arises remains unknown. In the context of the battle of the sexes, it is also unknown whether this effect is to the benefit of the male, the hermaphrodite, or both. We report that successful contact between mature sperm and oocyte in the C. elegans gonad at the start of fertilization causes the oocyte to release a signal that is transmitted to somatic cells in its mother, with the ultimate effect of reducing her attractiveness to males. Changes in hermaphrodite attractiveness are tied to the production of a volatile pheromone, the first such pheromone described in C. elegans. PMID:25453110

  1. Thermal stress resistance and aging effects of Panax notoginseng polysaccharides on Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Feng, Shiling; Cheng, Haoran; Xu, Zhou; Shen, Shian; Yuan, Ming; Liu, Jing; Ding, Chunbang

    2015-11-01

    Panax notoginseng attract public attention due to their potential biomedical properties and corresponding health benefits. The present study investigated the anti-aging and thermal stress resistance effects of polysaccharides from P. notoginseng on Caenorhabditis elegans. Results showed polysaccharides had little scavenging ability of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in vitro, but significantly extended lifespan of C. elegans, especially the main root polysaccharide (MRP) which prolongs the mean lifespan of wild type worms by 21%. Further study demonstrated that the heat stress resistance effect of polysaccharides on C. elegans might be attributed to the elevation of antioxidant enzyme activities (both superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT)) and the reduction lipid peroxidation of malondialdehyde (MDA) level. Taken together, the results provided a scientific basis for the further exploitation of the mechanism of longer lifespan controlled by P. notoginseng polysaccharides on C. elegans. The P. notoginseng polysaccharides might be considered as a potential source to delay aging. PMID:26234580

  2. Shape memory alloy-based small crawling robots inspired by C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Yuk, Hyunwoo; Kim, Daeyeon; Lee, Honggu; Jo, Sungho; Shin, Jennifer H

    2011-12-01

    Inspired by its simple musculature, actuation and motion mechanisms, we have developed a small crawling robot that closely mimics the model organism of our choice: Caenorhabditis elegans. A thermal shape memory alloy (SMA) was selected as an actuator due to the similarities of its properties to C. elegans muscles. Based on the anatomy of C. elegans, a 12-unit robot was designed to generate a sinusoidal undulating motion. Each body unit consisting of a pair of SMA actuators is serially connected by rigid links with an embedded motion control circuit. A simple binary operation-based motion control mechanism was implemented using a microcontroller. The assembled robot can execute C. elegans-like motion with a 0.17 Hz undulation frequency. Its motion is comparable to that of a real worm. PMID:21992959

  3. Cryptococcus neoformans var. grubii: Separate Varietal Status for Cryptococcus neoformans Serotype A Isolates

    PubMed Central

    Franzot, Sarah P.; Salkin, Ira F.; Casadevall, Arturo

    1999-01-01

    Cryptococcus neoformans var. neoformans presently includes isolates which have been determined by the immunologic reactivity of their capsular polysaccharides to be serotype A and those which have been determined to be serotype D. However, recent analyses of the URA5 sequences and DNA fingerprinting patterns suggest significant genetic differences between the two serotypes. Therefore, we propose to recognize these genotypic distinctions, as well as previously reported phenotypic differences, by restricting C. neoformans var. neoformans to isolates which are serotype D and describing a new variety, C. neoformans var. grubii, for serotype A isolates. PMID:9986871

  4. Dense aggregations of Pygospio elegans (Claparède): effect on macrofaunal community structure and sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolam, Stefan G.; Fernandes, Teresa F.

    2003-05-01

    Epibenthic biogenic structures such as polychaete tubes are conspicuous features of many marine soft-bottom habitats. This paper compares the benthic macrofauna in patches with high and low densities of the tube-dweller Pygospio elegans on intertidal sandflats in eastern Scotland (UK). The main aim of this study was to determine potential differences in the macrofaunal community structure, the size distribution of individual species and sediment properties. Multivariate data analyses revealed that the macrofaunal community composition (excluding P. elegans) within patches was always significantly different from outside patches, mainly due to variability in the abundances of Cerastoderma edule and Corophium volutator. In addition to P. elegans, 5 taxa were sufficiently abundant for univariate analyses, 4 of these ( Capitella capitata, C. edule, Macoma balthica and C. volutator) being significantly more abundant within P. elegans patches than in surrounding, non-patch sediments. The size distribution of P. elegans was significantly different between patches (bimodal distribution) and non-patches (skewed distribution). Similarly, there was a greater proportion of larger C. capitata individuals within patches compared to non-patch sediments. Sediment organic content and silt/clay fraction were always significantly higher in patch sediments while redox profiles showed no differences except at the end of the study period when the top 2 cm within patches were more positive and more negative at 4 cm. These results imply that even relatively small (1-1.5 m 2) P. elegans patches can have large effects on the spatial variability of macrofaunal community structure on intertidal sandflats. Towards the end of the study there were marked visual changes in the P. elegans patches, such as wave-ripple marks on the surface, which signified their demise. This coincided with dramatic changes in the invertebrate community structure within patches. Along with the decline in P. elegans numbers, dramatic increases in the densities of the 2 bivalve species C. edule and M. balthica occurred, while remaining comparatively stable outside patches. This suggested that the conditions within P. elegans patches were particularly favourable to successful bivalve spat settlement. We postulate that P. elegans patches have limited longevity and propose that enhanced bivalve competition within them leads to rapid decreases in P. elegans numbers.

  5. Distinct Pathogenesis and Host Responses during Infection of C. elegans by P. aeruginosa and S. aureus

    PubMed Central

    Irazoqui, Javier E.; Troemel, Emily R.; Feinbaum, Rhonda L.; Luhachack, Lyly G.; Cezairliyan, Brent O.; Ausubel, Frederick M.

    2010-01-01

    The genetically tractable model host Caenorhabditis elegans provides a valuable tool to dissect host-microbe interactions in vivo. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus utilize virulence factors involved in human disease to infect and kill C. elegans. Despite much progress, virtually nothing is known regarding the cytopathology of infection and the proximate causes of nematode death. Using light and electron microscopy, we found that P. aeruginosa infection entails intestinal distention, accumulation of an unidentified extracellular matrix and P. aeruginosa-synthesized outer membrane vesicles in the gut lumen and on the apical surface of intestinal cells, the appearance of abnormal autophagosomes inside intestinal cells, and P. aeruginosa intracellular invasion of C. elegans. Importantly, heat-killed P. aeruginosa fails to elicit a significant host response, suggesting that the C. elegans response to P. aeruginosa is activated either by heat-labile signals or pathogen-induced damage. In contrast, S. aureus infection causes enterocyte effacement, intestinal epithelium destruction, and complete degradation of internal organs. S. aureus activates a strong transcriptional response in C. elegans intestinal epithelial cells, which aids host survival during infection and shares elements with human innate responses. The C. elegans genes induced in response to S. aureus are mostly distinct from those induced by P. aeruginosa. In contrast to P. aeruginosa, heat-killed S. aureus activates a similar response as live S. aureus, which appears to be independent of the single C. elegans Toll-Like Receptor (TLR) protein. These data suggest that the host response to S. aureus is possibly mediated by pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs). Because our data suggest that neither the P. aeruginosa nor the S. aureus–triggered response requires canonical TLR signaling, they imply the existence of unidentified mechanisms for pathogen detection in C. elegans, with potentially conserved roles also in mammals. PMID:20617181

  6. Local and long-range activation of innate immunity by infection and damage in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Ewbank, Jonathan J; Pujol, Nathalie

    2016-02-01

    The nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans lends itself naturally to investigation of innate immunity, from the scale of molecules to the whole animal. Numerous studies have begun to reveal the complex interplay of signalling mechanisms that underlie host defence in C. elegans. We discuss here research that illustrates the connection between cell and tissue-level homeostatic mechanisms and the activation of innate immune signalling pathways. These are woven together to provide a comprehensive organismal protection against perceived threats. PMID:26517153

  7. A conserved checkpoint monitors meiotic chromosome synapsis inCaenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Bhalla, Needhi; Dernburg, Abby F.

    2005-07-14

    We report the discovery of a checkpoint that monitorssynapsis between homologous chromosomes to ensure accurate meioticsegregation. Oocytes containing unsynapsed chromosomes selectivelyundergo apoptosis even if agermline DNA damage checkpoint is inactivated.This culling mechanism isspecifically activated by unsynapsed pairingcenters, cis-acting chromosomesites that are also required to promotesynapsis in Caenorhabditis elegans. Apoptosis due to synaptic failurealso requires the C. elegans homolog of PCH2,a budding yeast pachytenecheckpoint gene, which suggests that this surveillance mechanism iswidely conserved.

  8. A natural odor attraction between lactic acid bacteria and the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Choi, Jae Im; Yoon, Kyoung-Hye; Subbammal Kalichamy, Saraswathi; Yoon, Sung-Sik; Il Lee, Jin

    2016-03-01

    Animal predators can track prey using their keen sense of smell. The bacteriovorous nematode Caenorhabditis elegans employs sensitive olfactory sensory neurons that express vertebrate-like odor receptors to locate bacteria. C. elegans displays odor-related behaviors such as attraction, aversion and adaptation, but the ecological significance of these behaviors is not known. Using a combination of food microbiology and genetics, we elucidate a possible predator-prey relationship between C. elegans and lactic acid bacteria (LAB) in rotting citrus fruit. LAB produces the volatile odor diacetyl as an oxidized by-product of fermentation in the presence of citrate. We show that C. elegans is attracted to LAB when grown on citrate media or Citrus medica L, commonly known as yuzu, a citrus fruit native to East Asia, and this attraction is mediated by the diacetyl odor receptor, ODR-10. We isolated a wild LAB strain and a wild C. elegans-related nematode from rotten yuzu, and demonstrate that the wild nematode was attracted to the diacetyl produced by LAB. These results not only identify an ecological function for a C. elegans olfactory behavior, but contribute to the growing understanding of ecological relationships between the microbial and metazoan worlds. PMID:26241504

  9. The lifespan-extending effects of Nymphaea hybrid root extract in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Ziheng; Lv, Ting; Li, Min; Zhang, Yusi; Xue, Ting; Yang, Linsong; Liu, Hui; Zhang, Weiming

    2014-12-01

    Nymphaea hybrid, a water lily from the Nymphaeaceae family, has been found to exhibit some in vivo beneficial effects. In the present study we investigated the lifespan-extending effects of Nymphaea hybrid root extract in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We found that Nymphaea hybrid root extract significantly extended the lifespan of C.elegans and improved its locomotion during aging. Moreover, Nymphaea hybrid root extract increased the resistance of C.elegans to both heat stress and oxidative stress. We found that the ability of Nymphaea hybrid root extract to increase lifespan was independent of its antimicrobial effects and was probably associated with its effects on the reproduction of C.elegans. In addition, the lifespan-extending effects of Nymphaea hybrid root extract were found to be dependent on the insulin/IGF signaling pathway. We also found that total flavones of Nymphaea hybrid could increase survival of C.elegans in both normal and adverse conditions, indicating that total flavones comprise the major fractions with lifespan-extending effects. Therefore, Nymphaea hybrid root extract has lifespan-extending effects in C.elegans and could be developed as a functional food. PMID:25367047

  10. Effect of nanoparticles on the biochemical and behavioral aging phenotype of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Scharf, Andrea; Piechulek, Annette; von Mikecz, Anna

    2013-12-23

    Invertebrate animal models such as the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) are increasingly used in nanotechnological applications. Research in this area covers a wide range from remote control of worm behavior by nanoparticles (NPs) to evaluation of organismal nanomaterial safety. Despite of the broad spectrum of investigated NP-bio interactions, little is known about the role of nanomaterials with respect to aging processes in C. elegans. We trace NPs in single cells of adult C. elegans and correlate particle distribution with the worm's metabolism and organ function. By confocal microscopy analysis of fluorescently labeled NPs in living worms, we identify two entry portals for the uptake of nanomaterials via the pharynx to the intestinal system and via the vulva to the reproductive system. NPs are localized throughout the cytoplasm and the cell nucleus in single intestinal, and vulval B and D cells. Silica NPs induce an untimely accumulation of insoluble ubiquitinated proteins, nuclear amyloid and reduction of pharyngeal pumping that taken together constitute a premature aging phenotype of C. elegans on the molecular and behavioral level, respectively. Screening of different nanomaterials for their effects on protein solubility shows that polystyrene or silver NPs do not induce accumulation of ubiquitinated proteins suggesting that alteration of protein homeostasis is a unique property of silica NPs. The nematode C. elegans represents an excellent model to investigate the effect of different types of nanomaterials on aging at the molecule, cell, and whole organism level. PMID:24256469

  11. Locomotion and Body Shape Changes of Metabolically Different C.elegans in Fluids with Varying Viscosities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Rachel; Brenowitz, Noah; Shen, Amy

    2010-11-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans (C.elegans) are soil dwelling roundworms that have served as model organisms for studying a multitude of biological and engineering phenomena. On agar, the locomotion of the worm is sinusoidal, while in water, the swimming motion of the worm appears more episodic. The efficiency of the worm locomotion is tested by placing the worm in four fluids with varying viscosities. We quantify the locomotion pattern variations by categorizing the swimming kinematics and shapes of the C.elegans. The locomotion of two mutants C.elegans and a control C.elegans was tested: daf2, nhr49, and N2 Wildtype. The metabolic effects of the worms are evaluated by focusing on the forward swimming velocity, wavelength, amplitude and swimming frequency were compared. Using these measured values, we were able to quantify the efficiency, the speed of propagation of the wave along the body resulting in forward movement (wave velocity), and transverse velocity, defined as the amplitude times the frequency, of the worm locomotion. It was shown that C.elegans has a preferential swimming shape that adapts as the environment changes regardless of its efficiency.

  12. Stereoselective metabolism of anthracene and phenanthrene by the fungus Cunninghamella elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Cerniglia, C.E.; Yang, S.K.

    1984-01-01

    The fungus Cunninghamella elegans oxidized anthracene and phenanthrene to form predominately transdihydrodiols. The metabolites were isolated by reversed-phase high-pressure liquid chromatography for structural and conformational analyses. Comparison of the circular dichroism spectrum of the fungal trans-1,2-dihydroxy-1,2-dihydroanthracene to that formed by rat liver microsomes indicated that the major enantiomer of the trans-1,2-dihydroxy-1,2-dihydroanthracene formed by C. elegans had an S,S absolute stereochemistry, which is opposite to the predominately 1R,2R dihydrodiol formed by rat liver microsomes. C. elegans oxidized phenanthrene primarily in the 1,2-positions to form trans-1,2-dihydroxy-1,2-dihydrophenanthrene. In addition, a minor amount of trans-3,4-dihydroxy-3,4-dihydrophenanthrene was detected. Metabolism at the K-region (9,10-positions) of phenanthrene was not detected. Comparison of the circular dichroism spectra of the phenanthrene trans-1,2- and trans-3,4-dihydrodiols formed by C. elegans to those formed by mammalian enzymes indicated that each of the dihydrodiols formed by C. elegans had an S,S absolute configuration. The results indicate that there are differences in both the regio- and stereoselective metabolism of anthracene and phenanthrene between the fungus C. elegans and rat liver microsomes. 26 references.

  13. Physiological and Immunological Regulations in Caenorhabditis elegans Infected with Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi.

    PubMed

    Sivamaruthi, Bhagavathi Sundaram; Balamurugan, Krishnaswamy

    2014-03-01

    Studies pertaining to Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium infection by utilizing model systems failed to mimic the essential aspects of immunity induced by Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi, as the determinants of innate immunity are distinct. The present study investigated the physiological and innate immune responses of S. Typhi infected Caenorhabditis elegans and also explored the Ty21a mediated immune enhancement in C. elegans. Ty21a is a known live vaccine for typhoidal infection in human beings. Physiological responses of C. elegans infected with S. Typhi assessed by survival and behavioral assays revealed that S. Typhi caused host mortality by persistent infection. However, Ty21a exposure to C. elegans was not harmful. Ty21a pre-exposed C. elegans, exhibited significant resistance against S. Typhi infection. Elevated accumulation of S. Typhi inside the infected host was observed when compared to Ty21a exposures. Transcript analysis of candidate innate immune gene (clec-60, clec-87, lys-7, ilys-3, scl-2, cpr-2, F08G5.6, atf-7, age-1, bec-1 and daf-16) regulations in the host during S. Typhi infection have been assessed through qPCR analysis to understand the activation of immune signaling pathways during S. Typhi infections. Gene silencing approaches confirmed that clec-60 and clec-87 has a major role in the defense system of C. elegans during S. Typhi infection. In conclusion, the study revealed that preconditioning of host with Ty21a protects against subsequent S. Typhi infection. PMID:24426167

  14. Identification of ciliary and ciliopathy genes in Caenorhabditis elegans through comparative genomics

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Nansheng; Mah, Allan; Blacque, Oliver E; Chu, Jeffrey; Phgora, Kiran; Bakhoum, Mathieu W; Hunt Newbury, C Rebecca; Khattra, Jaswinder; Chan, Susanna; Go, Anne; Efimenko, Evgeni; Johnsen, Robert; Phirke, Prasad; Swoboda, Peter; Marra, Marco; Moerman, Donald G; Leroux, Michel R; Baillie, David L; Stein, Lincoln D

    2006-01-01

    Background The recent availability of genome sequences of multiple related Caenorhabditis species has made it possible to identify, using comparative genomics, similarly transcribed genes in Caenorhabditis elegans and its sister species. Taking this approach, we have identified numerous novel ciliary genes in C. elegans, some of which may be orthologs of unidentified human ciliopathy genes. Results By screening for genes possessing canonical X-box sequences in promoters of three Caenorhabditis species, namely C. elegans, C. briggsae and C. remanei, we identified 93 genes (including known X-box regulated genes) that encode putative components of ciliated neurons in C. elegans and are subject to the same regulatory control. For many of these genes, restricted anatomical expression in ciliated cells was confirmed, and control of transcription by the ciliogenic DAF-19 RFX transcription factor was demonstrated by comparative transcriptional profiling of different tissue types and of daf-19(+) and daf-19(-) animals. Finally, we demonstrate that the dye-filling defect of dyf-5(mn400) animals, which is indicative of compromised exposure of cilia to the environment, is caused by a nonsense mutation in the serine/threonine protein kinase gene M04C9.5. Conclusion Our comparative genomics-based predictions may be useful for identifying genes involved in human ciliopathies, including Bardet-Biedl Syndrome (BBS), since the C. elegans orthologs of known human BBS genes contain X-box motifs and are required for normal dye filling in C. elegans ciliated neurons. PMID:17187676

  15. Anti-aging effect of polysaccharide from Bletilla striata on nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yusi; Lv, Ting; Li, Min; Xue, Ting; Liu, Hui; Zhang, Weiming; Ding, Xiaoyu; Zhuang, Ziheng

    2015-01-01

    Background: Polysaccharide isolated from Bletilla striata, a well-known traditional Chinese medicine (Bletilla striata polysaccharide [BSP]) has been found to play important roles in endothelial cells proliferation, inducible nitric oxide stimulation, wound healing acceleration and other processes. Recent studies found that B. striata has anti-oxidative properties, however, potential anti-aging effects of BSP in whole organisms has not been characterized. Objective: To investigate whether BSP has anti-aging effects on Caenorhabditis elegans. Materials and Methods: After treatment with BSP, the lifespan, locomotion ability, and stress resistance of C. elegans was determined. To provide insight into the underlying mechanism for the anti-aging effect of BSP, we measured its effect on bacterial growth, brood size of C. elegans, and the insulin/insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling pathway. Results: After BSP treatment, the lifespan of C. elegans was extended, and its locomotion ability and stress resistance were increased. BSP was found to have no effect on bacterial growth or on reproduction of C. elegans, However, mRNA levels of age-1 and hcf-1 were reduced after BSP treatment. Additionally, we observed that BSP did not extend the lifespan of daf-16 mutant animals. Conclusion: BSP produces an anti-aging effect on C. elegans through the insulin/IGF signaling pathway and holds promise for future development as a functional food. PMID:26246718

  16. ?High resolution-magic-angle spinning NMR spectroscopy for metabolic phenotyping of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Wong, Alan; Li, Xiaonan; Molin, Laurent; Solari, Florence; Elena-Herrmann, Bénédicte; Sakellariou, Dimitris

    2014-06-17

    Analysis of model organisms, such as the submillimeter-size Caenorhabditis elegans, plays a central role in understanding biological functions across species and in characterizing phenotypes associated with genetic mutations. In recent years, metabolic phenotyping studies of C. elegans based on (1)H high-resolution magic-angle spinning (HR-MAS) nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy have relied on the observation of large populations of nematodes, requiring labor-intensive sample preparation that considerably limits high-throughput characterization of C. elegans. In this work, we open new platforms for metabolic phenotyping of C. elegans mutants. We determine rich metabolic profiles (31 metabolites identified) from samples of 12 individuals using a (1)H NMR microprobe featuring high-resolution magic-angle coil spinning (HR-MACS), a simple conversion of a standard HR-MAS probe to ?HR-MAS. In addition, we characterize the metabolic variations between two different strains of C. elegans (wild-type vs slcf-1 mutant). We also acquire a NMR spectrum of a single C. elegans worm at 23.5 T. This study represents the first example of a metabolomic investigation carried out on a small number of submillimeter-size organisms, demonstrating the potential of NMR microtechnologies for metabolomics screening of small model organisms. PMID:24897622

  17. Solution structure of CEH-37 homeodomain of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Moon, Sunjin; Lee, Yong Woo; Kim, Woo Taek; Lee, Weontae

    2014-01-10

    Highlights: •We have determined solution structures of CEH-37 homedomain. •CEH-37 HD has a compact α-helical structure with HTH DNA binding motif. •Solution structure of CEH-37 HD shares its molecular topology with that of the homeodomain proteins. •Residues in the N-terminal region and HTH motif are important in binding to Caenorhabditis elegans telomeric DNA. •CEH-37 could play an important role in telomere function via DNA binding. -- Abstract: The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans protein CEH-37 belongs to the paired OTD/OTX family of homeobox-containing homeodomain proteins. CEH-37 shares sequence similarity with homeodomain proteins, although it specifically binds to double-stranded C. elegans telomeric DNA, which is unusual to homeodomain proteins. Here, we report the solution structure of CEH-37 homeodomain and molecular interaction with double-stranded C. elegans telomeric DNA using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. NMR structure shows that CEH-37 homeodomain is composed of a flexible N-terminal region and three α-helices with a helix-turn-helix (HTH) DNA binding motif. Data from size-exclusion chromatography and fluorescence spectroscopy reveal that CEH-37 homeodomain interacts strongly with double-stranded C. elegans telomeric DNA. NMR titration experiments identified residues responsible for specific binding to nematode double-stranded telomeric DNA. These results suggest that C. elegans homeodomain protein, CEH-37 could play an important role in telomere function via DNA binding.

  18. Identification of gamma-aminobutyric acid and its binding sites in Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Schaeffer, J.M.; Bergstrom, A.R.

    1988-01-01

    Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), glutamate decarboxylase and GABA-transaminase were identified in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. The concentration of GABA in C. elegans is approximately 10-fold lower than the concentration of GABA in rat brain. Glutamate decarboxylase and GABA-transaminase, the GABA anabolic and catabolic enzymes, are also present in C. elegans. Crude membrane fractions were prepared from C. elegans and used to study specific (/sup 3/H) GABA binding sites. GABA binds to C. elegans membranes with high affinity and low capacity. Muscimol is a competitive inhibitor of specific GABA binding with a K/sub I/ value of 120 nM. None of the other GABA agonists or antagonists inhibited greater than 40% of the specific GABA binding at concentrations up to 10/sup -4/M. Thirteen spider venoms were examined as possible GABA agonists or antagonists, the venom from Calilena agelenidae inhibits specific GABA binding with a K/sub I/ value of 6 nl/ml. These results suggest that GABA has a physiological role as a neurotransmitter in C. elegans.

  19. Excessive folate synthesis limits lifespan in the C. elegans: E. coli aging model

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Gut microbes influence animal health and thus, are potential targets for interventions that slow aging. Live E. coli provides the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans with vital micronutrients, such as folates that cannot be synthesized by animals. However, the microbe also limits C. elegans lifespan. Understanding these interactions may shed light on how intestinal microbes influence mammalian aging. Results Serendipitously, we isolated an E. coli mutant that slows C. elegans aging. We identified the disrupted gene to be aroD, which is required to synthesize aromatic compounds in the microbe. Adding back aromatic compounds to the media revealed that the increased C. elegans lifespan was caused by decreased availability of para-aminobenzoic acid, a precursor to folate. Consistent with this result, inhibition of folate synthesis by sulfamethoxazole, a sulfonamide, led to a dose-dependent increase in C. elegans lifespan. As expected, these treatments caused a decrease in bacterial and worm folate levels, as measured by mass spectrometry of intact folates. The folate cycle is essential for cellular biosynthesis. However, bacterial proliferation and C. elegans growth and reproduction were unaffected under the conditions that increased lifespan. Conclusions In this animal:microbe system, folates are in excess of that required for biosynthesis. This study suggests that microbial folate synthesis is a pharmacologically accessible target to slow animal aging without detrimental effects. PMID:22849329

  20. A genome-wide view of Caenorhabditis elegans base-substitution mutation processes

    PubMed Central

    Denver, Dee R.; Dolan, Peter C.; Wilhelm, Larry J.; Sung, Way; Lucas-Lledó, J. Ignacio; Howe, Dana K.; Lewis, Samantha C.; Okamoto, Kazu; Thomas, W. Kelley; Lynch, Michael; Baer, Charles F.

    2009-01-01

    Knowledge of mutation processes is central to understanding virtually all evolutionary phenomena and the underlying nature of genetic disorders and cancers. However, the limitations of standard molecular mutation detection methods have historically precluded a genome-wide understanding of mutation rates and spectra in the nuclear genomes of multicellular organisms. We applied two high-throughput DNA sequencing technologies to identify and characterize hundreds of spontaneously arising base-substitution mutations in 10 Caenorhabditis elegans mutation-accumulation (MA)-line nuclear genomes. C. elegans mutation rate estimates were similar to previous calculations based on smaller numbers of mutations. Mutations were distributed uniformly within and among chromosomes and were not associated with recombination rate variation in the MA lines, suggesting that intragenomic variation in genetic hitchhiking and/or background selection are primarily responsible for the chromosomal distribution patterns of polymorphic nucleotides in C. elegans natural populations. A strong mutational bias from G/C to A/T nucleotides was detected in the MA lines, implicating oxidative DNA damage as a major endogenous mutagenic force in C. elegans. The observed mutational bias also suggests that the C. elegans nuclear genome cannot be at equilibrium because of mutation alone. Transversions dominate the spectrum of spontaneous mutations observed here, whereas transitions dominate patterns of allegedly neutral polymorphism in natural populations of C. elegans and many other animal species; this observation challenges the assumption that natural patterns of molecular variation in noncoding regions of the nuclear genome accurately reflect underlying mutation processes. PMID:19805298

  1. Monascus-Fermented Dioscorea Enhances Oxidative Stress Resistance via DAF-16/FOXO in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Yeu-Ching; Yu, Chan-Wei; Liao, Vivian Hsiu-Chuan; Pan, Tzu-Ming

    2012-01-01

    Background Monascus-fermented products are mentioned in an ancient Chinese pharmacopoeia of medicinal food and herbs. Monascus-fermented products offer valuable therapeutic benefits and have been extensively used in East Asia for several centuries. Several biological activities of Monascus-fermented products were recently described, and the extract of Monascus-fermented products showed strong antioxidant activity of scavenging DPPH radicals. To evaluate whether Monascus-fermented dioscorea products have potential as nutritional supplements, Monascus-fermented dioscorea’s modulation of oxidative-stress resistance and associated regulatory mechanisms in Caenorhabditis elegans were investigated. Principal Findings We examined oxidative stress resistance of the ethanol extract of red mold dioscorea (RMDE) in C. elegans, and found that RMDE-treated wild-type C. elegans showed an increased survival during juglone-induced oxidative stress compared to untreated controls, whereas the antioxidant phenotype was absent from a daf-16 mutant. In addition, the RMDE reduced the level of intracellular reactive oxygen species in C. elegans. Finally, the RMDE affected the subcellular distribution of the FOXO transcription factor, DAF-16, in C. elegans and induced the expression of the sod-3 antioxidative gene. Conclusions These findings suggest that the RMDE acts as an antioxidative stress agent and thus may have potential as a nutritional supplement. Further studies in C. elegans suggest that the antioxidant effect of RMDE is mediated via regulation of the DAF-16/FOXO-dependent pathway. PMID:22745774

  2. E. coli OxyS non-coding RNA does not trigger RNAi in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Akay, Alper; Sarkies, Peter; Miska, Eric A

    2015-01-01

    The discovery of RNA interference (RNAi) in C. elegans has had a major impact on scientific research, led to the rapid development of RNAi tools and has inspired RNA-based therapeutics. Astonishingly, nematodes, planaria and many insects take up double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) from their environment to elicit RNAi; the biological function of this mechanism is unclear. Recently, the E. coli OxyS non-coding RNA was shown to regulate gene expression in C. elegans when E. coli is offered as food. This was surprising given that C. elegans is unlikely to encounter E. coli in nature. To directly test the hypothesis that the E. coli OxyS non-coding RNA triggers the C. elegans RNAi pathway, we sequenced small RNAs from C. elegans after feeding with bacteria. We clearly demonstrate that the OxyS non-coding RNA does not trigger an RNAi response in C. elegans. We conclude that the biology of environmental RNAi remains to be discovered. PMID:25873159

  3. Delivery of dietary triglycerides to Caenorhabditis elegans using lipid nanoparticles: Nanoemulsion-based delivery systems.

    PubMed

    Colmenares, Daniel; Sun, Quancai; Shen, Peiyi; Yue, Yiren; McClements, D Julian; Park, Yeonhwa

    2016-07-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a powerful tool for studying food bioactives on specific biochemical pathways. However, many food bioactives are highly hydrophobic with extremely low water-solubilities, thereby making them difficult to study using C. elegans. The purpose of this study was to develop nanoemulsion-based systems to deliver hydrophobic molecules in a form that could be ingested by C. elegans. Optical microscopy showed that oil-in-water nanoemulsions with a range of particle diameters (40-500nm) could be ingested by C. elegans. The amount of lipid ingested depended on the size and concentration of the nanoparticles. Fatty acid analysis showed incorporation of conjugated linoleic acid and there was a significant reduction in the fat levels of C. elegans when they were incubated with nanoemulsions containing conjugated linoleic acid, which suggested that this hydrophobic lipid was successfully delivered to the nematodes. The incorporation of hydrophobic molecules into nanoemulsion based-delivery systems may therefore enable their activities to be studied using C. elegans. PMID:26920318

  4. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a tool to predict chemical activity on mammalian development and identify mechanisms influencing toxicological outcome

    PubMed Central

    Harlow, Philippa H.; Perry, Simon J.; Widdison, Stephanie; Daniels, Shannon; Bondo, Eddie; Lamberth, Clemens; Currie, Richard A.; Flemming, Anthony J.

    2016-01-01

    To determine whether a C. elegans bioassay could predict mammalian developmental activity, we selected diverse compounds known and known not to elicit such activity and measured their effect on C. elegans egg viability. 89% of compounds that reduced C. elegans egg viability also had mammalian developmental activity. Conversely only 25% of compounds found not to reduce egg viability in C. elegans were also inactive in mammals. We conclude that the C. elegans egg viability assay is an accurate positive predictor, but an inaccurate negative predictor, of mammalian developmental activity. We then evaluated C. elegans as a tool to identify mechanisms affecting toxicological outcomes among related compounds. The difference in developmental activity of structurally related fungicides in C. elegans correlated with their rate of metabolism. Knockdown of the cytochrome P450s cyp-35A3 and cyp-35A4 increased the toxicity to C. elegans of the least developmentally active compounds to the level of the most developmentally active. This indicated that these P450s were involved in the greater rate of metabolism of the less toxic of these compounds. We conclude that C. elegans based approaches can predict mammalian developmental activity and can yield plausible hypotheses for factors affecting the biological potency of compounds in mammals. PMID:26987796

  5. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a tool to predict chemical activity on mammalian development and identify mechanisms influencing toxicological outcome.

    PubMed

    Harlow, Philippa H; Perry, Simon J; Widdison, Stephanie; Daniels, Shannon; Bondo, Eddie; Lamberth, Clemens; Currie, Richard A; Flemming, Anthony J

    2016-01-01

    To determine whether a C. elegans bioassay could predict mammalian developmental activity, we selected diverse compounds known and known not to elicit such activity and measured their effect on C. elegans egg viability. 89% of compounds that reduced C. elegans egg viability also had mammalian developmental activity. Conversely only 25% of compounds found not to reduce egg viability in C. elegans were also inactive in mammals. We conclude that the C. elegans egg viability assay is an accurate positive predictor, but an inaccurate negative predictor, of mammalian developmental activity. We then evaluated C. elegans as a tool to identify mechanisms affecting toxicological outcomes among related compounds. The difference in developmental activity of structurally related fungicides in C. elegans correlated with their rate of metabolism. Knockdown of the cytochrome P450s cyp-35A3 and cyp-35A4 increased the toxicity to C. elegans of the least developmentally active compounds to the level of the most developmentally active. This indicated that these P450s were involved in the greater rate of metabolism of the less toxic of these compounds. We conclude that C. elegans based approaches can predict mammalian developmental activity and can yield plausible hypotheses for factors affecting the biological potency of compounds in mammals. PMID:26987796

  6. Regulatory analysis of the C. elegans genome with spatiotemporal resolution

    PubMed Central

    Araya, Carlos L.; Kawli, Trupti; Kundaje, Anshul; Jiang, Lixia; Wu, Beijing; Vafeados, Dionne; Terrell, Robert; Weissdepp, Peter; Gevirtzman, Louis; Mace, Daniel; Niu, Wei; Boyle, Alan P.; Xie, Dan; Ma, Lijia; Murray, John I.; Reinke, Valerie; Waterston, Robert H.; Snyder, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Summary Discovering the structure and dynamics of transcriptional regulatory events in the genome with cellular and temporal resolution is crucial to understanding the regulatory underpinnings of development and disease. We determined the genomic distribution of binding sites for 92 transcription factors (TFs) and regulatory proteins across multiple stages of C. elegans development by performing 241 ChIP-seq experiments. Integrating regulatory binding and cellular-resolution expression data yielded a spatiotemporally-resolved metazoan TF binding map. Using this map, we explore developmental regulatory circuits that encode combinatorial logic at the levels of co-binding and co-expression of TFs, characterizing (1) the genomic coverage and clustering of regulatory binding, (2) the binding preferences of and biological processes regulated by TFs, (3) the global TF co-associations and genomic subdomains that suggest shared patterns of regulation, and (4) key TFs and TF co-associations for fate specification of individual lineages and cell-types. PMID:25164749

  7. Is dauer pheromone of Caenorhabditis elegans really a pheromone?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viney, M. E.; Franks, N. R.

    Animals respond to signals and cues in their environment. The difference between a signal (e.g. a pheromone) and a cue (e.g. a waste product) is that the information content of a signal is subject to natural selection, whereas that of a cue is not. The model free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans forms an alternative developmental morph (the dauer larva) in response to a so-called `dauer pheromone', produced by all worms. We suggest that the production of `dauer pheromone' has no fitness advantage for an individual worm and therefore we propose that `dauer pheromone' is not a signal, but a cue. Thus, it should not be called a pheromone.

  8. Suppressors of the Unc-73 Gene of Caenorhabditis Elegans

    PubMed Central

    Run, J. Q.; Steven, R.; Hung, M. S.; van-Weeghel, R.; Culotti, J. G.; Way, J. C.

    1996-01-01

    The unc-73 gene of Caenorhabditis elegans is necessary for proper axon guidance. Animals mutant in this gene are severely uncoordinated and also exhibit defects in cell migration and cell lineages. We have isolated coordinated revertants of unc-73(e936). These fall into three classes: intragenic revertants, extragenic dominant suppressors (sup-39), and a single apparently intragenic mutation that is a dominant suppressor with a linked recessive lethal phenotype. sup-39 mutations cause early embryonic lethality, but escapers have a wild-type movement phenotype as larvae and adults. Gonads of sup-39 mutant animals show a novel defect: normal gonads have a single row of oocytes, but sup-39 gonads often have two rows of oocytes. This result suggests that the mutant gonad is defective in choosing on its surface only a single site from which nuclei will emerge to form oocytes. These results are interpreted in terms of an effect of unc-73 on determination of cell polarity. PMID:8722777

  9. Neural and genetic degeneracy underlies Caenorhabditis elegans feeding behavior

    PubMed Central

    Trojanowski, Nicholas F.; Padovan-Merhar, Olivia; Fang-Yen, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Degenerate networks, in which structurally distinct elements can perform the same function or yield the same output, are ubiquitous in biology. Degeneracy contributes to the robustness and adaptability of networks in varied environmental and evolutionary contexts. However, how degenerate neural networks regulate behavior in vivo is poorly understood, especially at the genetic level. Here, we identify degenerate neural and genetic mechanisms that underlie excitation of the pharynx (feeding organ) in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans using cell-specific optogenetic excitation and inhibition. We show that the pharyngeal neurons MC, M2, M4, and I1 form multiple direct and indirect excitatory pathways in a robust network for control of pharyngeal pumping. I1 excites pumping via MC and M2 in a state-dependent manner. We identify nicotinic and muscarinic receptors through which the pharyngeal network regulates feeding rate. These results identify two different mechanisms by which degeneracy is manifest in a neural circuit in vivo. PMID:24872529

  10. Electrical Activity and Behavior in the Pharynx of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Raizen, David M.; Avery, Leon

    2015-01-01

    Summary The pharynx of C. elegans, a model system for neural networks and for membrane excitability, has been chiefly studied by observing its behavior in normal worms, in mutant worms, and in worms lacking pharyngeal neurons. To complement this behavioral approach, we devised a method for recording currents produced by changes in pharyngeal muscle membrane potential. The electrical records, called electropharyngeograms, contain transients caused by pharyngeal muscle action potentials and by inhibitory synaptic transmission between pharyngeal neuron M3 and the muscle. Using the electropharyngeograms, we show that ?-aminobutyric acid is not likely to be the M3 neurotransmitter, that synaptic transmission is present but abnormal in mutants lacking synaptotagmin, and that worms mutant in the eat-4 gene are defective for M3 function or transmission. PMID:8155316

  11. Crossover Suppressors and Balanced Recessive Lethals in CAENORHABDITIS ELEGANS

    PubMed Central

    Herman, Robert K.

    1978-01-01

    Two dominant suppressors of crossing over have been identified following X-ray treatment of the small nematode C. elegans. They suppress crossing over in linkage group II (LGII) about 100-fold and 50-fold and are both tightly linked to LGII markers. One, called C1, segregates independently of all other linkage groups and is homozygous fertile. The other is a translocation involving LGII and X. The translocation also suppresses crossing over along the right half of X and is homozygous lethal. C1 has been used as a balancer of LGII recessive lethal and sterile mutations induced by EMS. The frequencies of occurrence of lethals and steriles were approximately equal. Fourteen mutations were assigned to complementation groups and mapped. They tended to map in the same region where LGII visibles are clustered. PMID:631558

  12. Catecholamine receptor polymorphisms affect decision-making in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Bendesky, Andres; Tsunozaki, Makoto; Rockman, Matthew V.; Kruglyak, Leonid; Bargmann, Cornelia I.

    2011-01-01

    Innate behaviours are flexible: they change rapidly in response to transient environmental conditions, and are modified slowly by changes in the genome. A classical flexible behaviour is the exploration-exploitation decision, which describes the time at which foraging animals choose to abandon a depleting food supply. Here we use quantitative genetic analysis to examine the decision to leave a food patch in Caenorhabditis elegans. We find that patch-leaving is a multigenic trait regulated in part by naturally-occurring noncoding polymorphisms in tyra-3, which encodes a G protein-coupled catecholamine receptor related to vertebrate adrenergic receptors. tyra-3 acts in sensory neurons that detect food-related cues, suggesting that the internal catecholamines detected by tyra-3 regulate responses to external conditions. These results indicate that genetic variation and environmental cues can converge on common circuits to regulate behaviour, and suggest that catecholamines have an ancient role in regulating behavioural decisions. PMID:21412235

  13. Food sensitizes C. elegans avoidance behaviours through acute dopamine signalling.

    PubMed

    Ezcurra, Marina; Tanizawa, Yoshinori; Swoboda, Peter; Schafer, William R

    2011-03-16

    Many behavioural states are modulated by food availability and nutritional status. Here, we report that in Caenorhabditis elegans, the presence of an external food source enhances avoidance responses to soluble repellents sensed by the polymodal ASH neurons. This enhancement requires dopamine signalling and is mimicked by exogenous dopamine. Food modulation is dependent on the mechanosensory cilia of the dopaminergic neurons, indicating that dopamine is released in response to sensation of bacteria. Activation of the dopamine neurons leads within seconds to a transient state of increased sensory acuity. In vivo imaging experiments indicate that this dopamine-dependent sensitization results in part from modality-specific increases in the magnitude and duration of gustatory responses in the ASH neurons. The D1-like dopamine receptor DOP-4 acts cell autonomously in ASH to mediate effects on response magnitude. Thus, dopamine functions as a direct signal of the presence of food to control context-dependent behavioural states. PMID:21304491

  14. A Circuit for Gradient Climbing in C. elegans Chemotaxis.

    PubMed

    Larsch, Johannes; Flavell, Steven W; Liu, Qiang; Gordus, Andrew; Albrecht, Dirk R; Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2015-09-22

    Animals have a remarkable ability to track dynamic sensory information. For example, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans can locate a diacetyl odor source across a 100,000-fold concentration range. Here, we relate neuronal properties, circuit implementation, and behavioral strategies underlying this robust navigation. Diacetyl responses in AWA olfactory neurons are concentration and history dependent; AWA integrates over time at low odor concentrations, but as concentrations rise, it desensitizes rapidly through a process requiring cilia transport. After desensitization, AWA retains sensitivity to small odor increases. The downstream AIA interneuron amplifies weak odor inputs and desensitizes further, resulting in a stereotyped response to odor increases over three orders of magnitude. The AWA-AIA circuit drives asymmetric behavioral responses to odor increases that facilitate gradient climbing. The adaptation-based circuit motif embodied by AWA and AIA shares computational properties with bacterial chemotaxis and the vertebrate retina, each providing a solution for maintaining sensitivity across a dynamic range. PMID:26365196

  15. Comprehensive analysis of mutually exclusive alternative splicing in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kuroyanagi, Hidehito; Takei, Satomi; Suzuki, Yutaka

    2014-01-01

    Mutually exclusive selection of one exon in a cluster of exons is a rare form of alternative pre-mRNA splicing, yet suggests strict regulation. However, the repertoires of regulation mechanisms for the mutually exclusive (ME) splicing in vivo are still unknown. Here, we experimentally explore putative ME exons in C. elegans to demonstrate that 29 ME exon clusters in 27 genes are actually selected in a mutually exclusive manner. Twenty-two of the clusters consist of homologous ME exons. Five clusters have too short intervening introns to be excised between the ME exons. Fidelity of ME splicing relies at least in part on nonsense-mediated mRNA decay for 14 clusters. These results thus characterize all the repertoires of ME splicing in this organism. PMID:25254147

  16. How Does C. elegans Respond to Altered Gravity?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Conley, Catharine A.; Udranszky, Ingrid; Hoffman, David; Kim, Stuart K.

    2001-01-01

    All organisms on Earth have evolved at unit gravity (1xG), and thus are probably adapted to function optimally at 1xG. However, with the advent of space exploration, it has been shown that organisms are capable of surviving at much less than 1xG, as well as at greater than 1xG. Organisms subjected to increased G levels exhibit alterations in physiological processes that compensate for novel environmental stresses, such as increased weight and density-driven sedimentation. These physiological adaptations illustrate the plasticity of organisms when presented with environmental conditions in which they could not possibly have evolved. Investigating the mechanism(s) behind these adaptations may uncover biological pathways that have not previously been identified. An easily-cultured and well-studied organism, such as C. elegans, would be a desirable model system for these studies. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  17. A quantifiably complete repertoire of C. elegans locomotion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Andre; Schwarz, Roland; Branicky, Robyn; Schafer, William

    2014-03-01

    Visible phenotypes have played a critical role in understanding the molecular basis of behaviour in model organisms. However, most current descriptions of behaviour are based on manually identified events or a limited set of quantitative parameters. Here we report an extension of the concept of behavioural motifs to exhaustively catalogue C. elegans locomotion and derive a repertoire that is quantifiably complete. A repertoire learned for spontaneous behaviour in wild-type worms can be used to fit data from mutants or worms in different environmental conditions and provides a sensitive measure of phenotypic similarity. Repertoire comparison can also be used to assess inter-individual variation and the compositionality of behaviour, that is, the extent to which behavioural adaptation involves the creation of novel repertoire elements or the reuse of existing elements in novel sequences. Repertoire derivation is general, so that given a representation of posture, our approach will apply to other organisms.

  18. Mutation of C. elegans demethylase spr-5 extends transgenerational longevity.

    PubMed

    Greer, Eric Lieberman; Becker, Ben; Latza, Christian; Antebi, Adam; Shi, Yang

    2016-02-01

    Complex organismal properties such as longevity can be transmitted across generations by non-genetic factors. Here we demonstrate that deletion of the C. elegans histone H3 lysine 4 dimethyl (H3K4me2) demethylase, spr-5, causes a trans-generational increase in lifespan. We identify a chromatin-modifying network, which regulates this lifespan extension. We further show that this trans-generational lifespan extension is dependent on a hormonal signaling pathway involving the steroid dafachronic acid, an activator of the nuclear receptor DAF-12. These findings suggest that loss of the demethylase SPR-5 causes H3K4me2 mis-regulation and activation of a known lifespan-regulating signaling pathway, leading to trans-generational lifespan extension. PMID:26691751

  19. A Caenorhabditis elegans Model System for Amylopathy Study

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Zhibing; Sesti, Federico

    2013-01-01

    Amylopathy is a term that describes abnormal synthesis and accumulation of amyloid beta (Aβ) in tissues with time. Aβ is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and is found in Lewy body dementia, inclusion body myositis and cerebral amyloid angiopathy 1-4. Amylopathies progressively develop with time. For this reason simple organisms with short lifespans may help to elucidate molecular aspects of these conditions. Here, we describe experimental protocols to study Aβ-mediated neurodegeneration using the worm Caenorhabditis elegans. Thus, we construct transgenic worms by injecting DNA encoding human Aβ42 into the syncytial gonads of adult hermaphrodites. Transformant lines are stabilized by a mutagenesis-induced integration. Nematodes are age synchronized by collecting and seeding their eggs. The function of neurons expressing Aβ42 is tested in opportune behavioral assays (chemotaxis assays). Primary neuronal cultures obtained from embryos are used to complement behavioral data and to test the neuroprotective effects of anti-apoptotic compounds. PMID:23711592

  20. Radiation-induced gene expression in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nelson, Gregory A.; Jones, Tamako A.; Chesnut, Aaron; Smith, Anna L.

    2002-01-01

    We used the nematode C. elegans to characterize the genotoxic and cytotoxic effects of ionizing radiation in a simple animal model emphasizing the unique effects of charged particle radiation. Here we demonstrate by RT-PCR differential display and whole genome microarray hybridization experiments that gamma rays, accelerated protons and iron ions at the same physical dose lead to unique transcription profiles. 599 of 17871 genes analyzed (3.4%) showed differential expression 3 hrs after exposure to 3 Gy of radiation. 193 were up-regulated, 406 were down-regulated and 90% were affected only by a single species of radiation. A novel statistical clustering technique identified the regulatory relationships between the radiation-modulated genes and showed that genes affected by each radiation species were associated with unique regulatory clusters. This suggests that independent homeostatic mechanisms are activated in response to radiation exposure as a function of track structure or ionization density.

  1. An Engineering Approach to Extending Lifespan in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sagi, Dror; Kim, Stuart K.

    2012-01-01

    We have taken an engineering approach to extending the lifespan of Caenorhabditis elegans. Aging stands out as a complex trait, because events that occur in old animals are not under strong natural selection. As a result, lifespan can be lengthened rationally using bioengineering to modulate gene expression or to add exogenous components. Here, we engineered longer lifespan by expressing genes from zebrafish encoding molecular functions not normally present in worms. Additionally, we extended lifespan by increasing the activity of four endogenous worm aging pathways. Next, we used a modular approach to extend lifespan by combining components. Finally, we used cell- and worm-based assays to analyze changes in cell physiology and as a rapid means to evaluate whether multi-component transgenic lines were likely to have extended longevity. Using engineering to add novel functions and to tune endogenous functions provides a new framework for lifespan extension that goes beyond the constraints of the worm genome. PMID:22737090

  2. Dimensionality and Dynamics in the Behavior of C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Stephens, Greg J.; Johnson-Kerner, Bethany; Bialek, William; Ryu, William S.

    2008-01-01

    A major challenge in analyzing animal behavior is to discover some underlying simplicity in complex motor actions. Here, we show that the space of shapes adopted by the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is low dimensional, with just four dimensions accounting for 95% of the shape variance. These dimensions provide a quantitative description of worm behavior, and we partially reconstruct “equations of motion” for the dynamics in this space. These dynamics have multiple attractors, and we find that the worm visits these in a rapid and almost completely deterministic response to weak thermal stimuli. Stimulus-dependent correlations among the different modes suggest that one can generate more reliable behaviors by synchronizing stimuli to the state of the worm in shape space. We confirm this prediction, effectively “steering” the worm in real time. PMID:18389066

  3. In vitro biological screening of the stem of Desmodium elegans

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Arshad; Usman, Rabia; Rauf, Abdur; Wang, Ming-Liang; Muhammad, Naveed; Aman, Akhatar; Tahir, Taha Hussein Musa

    2013-01-01

    Objective To explore the medicinal importance of the stem of Desmodium elegans, methanolic extract, and its different solvent fractions were evaluated for brine shrimp lethality, insecticidal and phytotoxicity, antifungal, and antibacterial activities. Methods The methanolic extract and its solvent fractions were tested for cytotoxic, phytotoxic, insecticidal, antifungal, and antibacterial effects using our previous published protocols. Results The methanolic, DCM, ethyl acetate and n-butanol fractions exhibited insecticidal effect against Callosobruchus analis and Rhyzopertha dominic. The methanolic extract, n-hexane, DCM ethyl acetate and n-butanol showed 75, 85, 85, 65 and 5% phytotoxicity at the tested concentration of 500 µg/mL respectively. The solvent fractions (DCM and ethyl acetate) were effective against F. solani (10% and 20% inhibition respectively). All the tested samples were devoid of cytotoxic and antibacterial effects. Conclusion It was concluded that this plant can be practiced for control of weeds and insects. PMID:23998011

  4. Neurobiology of Caenorhabditis elegans Locomotion: Where Do We Stand?

    PubMed Central

    Gjorgjieva, Julijana; Biron, David; Haspel, Gal

    2014-01-01

    Animals use a nervous system for locomotion in some stage of their life cycle. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, a major animal model for almost all fields of experimental biology, has long been used for detailed studies of genetic and physiological locomotion mechanisms. Of its 959 somatic cells, 302 are neurons that are identifiable by lineage, location, morphology, and neurochemistry in every adult hermaphrodite. Of those, 75 motoneurons innervate body wall muscles that provide the thrust during locomotion. In this Overview, we concentrate on the generation of either forward- or backward-directed motion during crawling and swimming. We describe locomotion behavior, the parts constituting the locomotion system, and the relevant neuronal connectivity. Because it is not yet fully understood how these components combine to generate locomotion, we discuss competing hypotheses and models. PMID:26955070

  5. Controlling neural activity in Caenorhabditis elegans to evoke chemotactic behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kocabas, Askin; Shen, Ching-Han; Guo, Zengcai V.; Ramanathan, Sharad

    2013-03-01

    Animals locate and track chemoattractive gradients in the environment to find food. With its simple nervous system, Caenorhabditis elegans is a good model system in which to understand how the dynamics of neural activity control this search behavior. To understand how the activity in its interneurons coordinate different motor programs to lead the animal to food, here we used optogenetics and new optical tools to manipulate neural activity directly in freely moving animals to evoke chemotactic behavior. By deducing the classes of activity patterns triggered during chemotaxis and exciting individual neurons with these patterns, we identified interneurons that control the essential locomotory programs for this behavior. Notably, we discovered that controlling the dynamics of activity in just one interneuron pair was sufficient to force the animal to locate, turn towards and track virtual light gradients.

  6. Paternal RNA contributions in the Caenorhabditis elegans zygote

    PubMed Central

    Stoeckius, Marlon; Grün, Dominic; Rajewsky, Nikolaus

    2014-01-01

    Development of the early embryo is thought to be mainly driven by maternal gene products and post-transcriptional gene regulation. Here, we used metabolic labeling to show that RNA can be transferred by sperm into the oocyte upon fertilization. To identify genes with paternal expression in the embryo, we performed crosses of males and females from divergent Caenorhabditis elegans strains. RNA sequencing of mRNAs and small RNAs in the 1-cell hybrid embryo revealed that about one hundred sixty paternal mRNAs are reproducibly expressed in the embryo and that about half of all assayed endogenous siRNAs and piRNAs are also of paternal origin. Together, our results suggest an unexplored paternal contribution to early development. PMID:24894551

  7. Dopamine signaling regulates fat content through ?-oxidation in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Barros, Alexandre Guimarães de Almeida; Bridi, Jessika Cristina; de Souza, Bruno Rezende; de Castro Júnior, Célio; de Lima Torres, Karen Cecília; Malard, Leandro; Jorio, Ado; de Miranda, Débora Marques; Ashrafi, Kaveh; Romano-Silva, Marco Aurélio

    2014-01-01

    The regulation of energy balance involves an intricate interplay between neural mechanisms that respond to internal and external cues of energy demand and food availability. Compelling data have implicated the neurotransmitter dopamine as an important part of body weight regulation. However, the precise mechanisms through which dopamine regulates energy homeostasis remain poorly understood. Here, we investigate mechanisms through which dopamine modulates energy storage. We showed that dopamine signaling regulates fat reservoirs in Caenorhabditis elegans. We found that the fat reducing effects of dopamine were dependent on dopaminergic receptors and a set of fat oxidation enzymes. Our findings reveal an ancient role for dopaminergic regulation of fat and suggest that dopamine signaling elicits this outcome through cascades that ultimately mobilize peripheral fat depots. PMID:24465759

  8. Assessing metabolic activity in aging Caenorhabditis elegans: concepts and controversies.

    PubMed

    Braeckman, Bart P; Houthoofd, Koen; Vanfleteren, Jacques R

    2002-12-01

    It is widely believed that normal by-products of oxidative metabolism and the subsequent molecular damage inflicted by them couple the aging process to metabolic rate. Accordingly, high metabolic rates would be expected to accelerate aging, and life-extending interventions are often assumed to act by attenuating metabolic rate. Notorious examples in Caenorhabditis elegans are food restriction, mutation in the Clock genes and several genes of the insulin-like signalling pathway. Here we discuss how metabolic rate can be accurately measured and normalized, and how to deal with differences in body size. These issues are illustrated using experimental data of the long-lived mutant strains clk-1(e2519) and daf-2(e1370). Appropriate analysis shows that metabolic rates in wildtype and in the clk-1 mutant are very similar. In contrast, the metabolic rate profiles point to a metabolic shift toward enhanced efficiency of oxidative phosphorylation in the daf-2 worms. PMID:12882336

  9. A global profile of germline gene expression in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Reinke, V; Smith, H E; Nance, J; Wang, J; Van Doren, C; Begley, R; Jones, S J; Davis, E B; Scherer, S; Ward, S; Kim, S K

    2000-09-01

    We used DNA microarrays to profile gene expression patterns in the C. elegans germline and identified 1416 germline-enriched transcripts that define three groups. The sperm-enriched group contains an unusually large number of protein kinases and phosphatases. The oocyte-enriched group includes potentially new components of embryonic signaling pathways. The germline-intrinsic group, defined as genes expressed similarly in germlines making only sperm or only oocytes, contains a family of piwi-related genes that may be important for stem cell proliferation. Finally, examination of the chromosomal location of germline transcripts revealed that sperm-enriched and germline-intrinsic genes are nearly absent from the X chromosome, but oocyte-enriched genes are not. PMID:11030340

  10. The epipharyngeal sensilla of the damselfly Ischnura elegans (Odonata, Coenagrionidae).

    PubMed

    Rebora, Manuela; Gaino, Elda; Piersanti, Silvana

    2014-11-01

    The knowledge on Odonata adult mouthparts sensilla is scanty and, notwithstanding the epipharynx in the labrum is considered an organ of taste, no ultrastructural investigation has been performed so far on this structure in Odonata. The labrum of the adult of the damselfly Ischnura elegans (Odonata, Coenagrionidae) shows on its ventral side the epipharynx with sensilla represented by articulated hairs and by small pegs located at the apex of slightly raised domes. Under scanning and transmission electron microscope, the articulated hairs, with a well developed socket and tubular body, have the typical structure of bristles, the most common type of insect mechanoreceptors, usually responding to direct touch; the pegs, showing an apical pore together with a variable number of sensory neurons (from two to five), the outer dendritic segments of which show a dendrite sheath stopping along their length, have features typical of contact chemoreceptors. PMID:25080274

  11. Fragile lifespan expansion by dietary mitohormesis in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Tauffenberger, Arnaud; Vaccaro, Alexandra; Parker, J. Alex

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial function is central to longevity and an imbalance in mitonuclear protein homeostasis activates a protective response called the mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPRmt). Toxic compounds damaging mitochondria trigger the UPRmt, but at sublethal doses these insults extend lifespan in simple animals like C. elegans. Mitochondria are the main energy suppliers in eukaryotes, but it is not known if diet influences the UPRmt. High dietary glucose reduces lifespan in worms, and we show that high dietary glucose activates the UPRmt to protect against lifespan reduction. While lifelong exposure to glucose reduces lifespan, glucose exposure restricted to developing animals extends lifespan and requires the UPRmt. However, this lifespan extension is abolished by further mitochondrial stress in adult animals. We demonstrate that dietary conditions regulate mitochondrial homeostasis, where induction of the UPRmt during development extends lifespan, but prolonged activation into adulthood reduces lifespan. PMID:26764305

  12. Fragile lifespan expansion by dietary mitohormesis in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Tauffenberger, Arnaud; Vaccaro, Alexandra; Parker, J Alex

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondrial function is central to longevity and an imbalance in mitonuclear protein homeostasis activates a protective response called the mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPRmt). Toxic compounds damaging mitochondria trigger the UPRmt, but at sublethal doses these insults extend lifespan in simple animals like C. elegans. Mitochondria are the main energy suppliers in eukaryotes, but it is not known if diet influences the UPRmt. High dietary glucose reduces lifespan in worms, and we show that high dietary glucose activates the UPRmt to protect against lifespan reduction. While lifelong exposure to glucose reduces lifespan, glucose exposure restricted to developing animals extends lifespan and requires the UPRmt. However, this lifespan extension is abolished by further mitochondrial stress in adult animals. We demonstrate that dietary conditions regulate mitochondrial homeostasis, where induction of the UPRmt during development extends lifespan, but prolonged activation into adulthood reduces lifespan. PMID:26764305

  13. A size threshold governs Caenorhabditis elegans developmental progression.

    PubMed

    Uppaluri, Sravanti; Brangwynne, Clifford P

    2015-08-22

    The growth of organisms from humans to bacteria is affected by environmental conditions. However, mechanisms governing growth and size control are not well understood, particularly in the context of changes in food availability in developing multicellular organisms. Here, we use a novel microfluidic platform to study the impact of diet on the growth and development of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. This device allows us to observe individual worms throughout larval development, quantify their growth as well as pinpoint the moulting transitions marking successive developmental stages. Under conditions of low food availability, worms grow very slowly, but do not moult until they have achieved a threshold size. The time spent in larval stages can be extended by over an order of magnitude, in agreement with a simple threshold size model. Thus, a critical worm size appears to trigger developmental progression, and may contribute to prolonged lifespan under dietary restriction. PMID:26290076

  14. Mechanical systems biology of C. elegans touch sensation

    PubMed Central

    Krieg, Michael; Dunn, Alex; Goodman, Miriam B.

    2015-01-01

    The sense of touch informs us of the physical properties of our surroundings and is a critical aspect of communication. Before touches are perceived, mechanical signals are transmitted quickly and reliably from the skin’s surface to mechano-electrical transduction channels embedded within specialized sensory neurons. We are just beginning to understand how soft tissues participate in force transmission and how they are deformed. Here, we review empirical and theoretical studies of single molecules and molecular ensembles thought to be involved in mechanotransmission and apply the concepts emerging from this work to the sense of touch. We focus on the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a well-studied model for touch sensation in which mechanics can be studied on the molecular, cellular, and systems level. Finally, we conclude that force transmission is an emergent property of macromolecular cellular structures that mutually stabilize one another. PMID:25597279

  15. Manganese-induced Neurotoxicity: From C. elegans to Humans

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Pan; Chakraborty, Sudipta; Peres, Tanara V.; Bowman, Aaron B.; Aschner, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Manganese (Mn) is one of the most abundant metals on the earth. It is required for normal cellular activities, but overexposure leads to toxicity. Neurons are more susceptible to Mn-induced toxicity than other cells, and accumulation of Mn in the brain results in Manganism that presents with Parkinson's disease (PD)-like symptoms. In the last decade, a number of Mn transporters have been identified, which improves our understanding of Mn transport in and out of cells. However, the mechanism of Mn-induced neurotoxicity is only partially uncovered, with further research needed to explore the whole picture of Mn-induced toxicity. In this review, we will address recent progress in Mn-induced neurotoxicity from C. elegans to humans, and explore future directions that will help understand the mechanisms of its neurotoxicity. PMID:25893090

  16. Gene expression changes associated with aging in C. elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Golden, Tamara R; Melov, Simon

    2007-01-01

    Great inroads into the understanding of aging have been made using C. elegans as a model system. Several genes have been identified that, when mutated, can extend lifespan. Yet, much about aging remains a mystery, and new technologies that allow the simultaneous assay of expression levels of thousands of genes have been applied to the question of how and why aging might occur. With correct experimental design and statistical analysis, differential gene expression between two or more populations can be obtained with high confidence. The ability to survey the entire genome in an unbiased way is a great asset for the study of complex biological phenomena such as aging. Aging undoubtedly involves changes in multiple genes involved in multiple processes, some of which may not yet be known. Gene expression profiling of wild type aging, and of strains with increased life spans, has provided some insight into potential mechanisms, and more can be expected in the future. PMID:18050504

  17. Genetic Analysis of Lysosomal Trafficking in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Hermann, Greg J.; Schroeder, Lena K.; Hieb, Caroline A.; Kershner, Aaron M.; Rabbitts, Beverley M.; Fonarev, Paul; Grant, Barth D.; Priess, James R.

    2005-01-01

    The intestinal cells of Caenorhabditis elegans embryos contain prominent, birefringent gut granules that we show are lysosome-related organelles. Gut granules are labeled by lysosomal markers, and their formation is disrupted in embryos depleted of AP-3 subunits, VPS-16, and VPS-41. We define a class of gut granule loss (glo) mutants that are defective in gut granule biogenesis. We show that the glo-1 gene encodes a predicted Rab GTPase that localizes to lysosome-related gut granules in the intestine and that glo-4 encodes a possible GLO-1 guanine nucleotide exchange factor. These and other glo genes are homologous to genes implicated in the biogenesis of specialized, lysosome-related organelles such as melanosomes in mammals and pigment granules in Drosophila. The glo mutants thus provide a simple model system for the analysis of lysosome-related organelle biogenesis in animal cells. PMID:15843430

  18. Genetic interactions affecting touch sensitivity in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Gu, G; Caldwell, G A; Chalfie, M

    1996-01-01

    At least 13 genes (mec-1, mec-2, mec-4-10, mec-12, mec-14, mec-15, and mec-18) are needed for the response to gentle touch by 6 touch receptor neurons in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Several, otherwise recessive alleles of some of these genes act as dominant enhancer mutations of temperature-sensitive alleles of mec-4, mec-5, mec-6, mec-12, and mec-15. Screens for additional dominant enhancers of mec-4 and mec-5 yielded mutations in previously known genes. In addition, some mec-7 alleles showed allele-specific, dominant suppression of the mec-15 touch-insensitive (Mec) phenotype. The dominant enhancement and suppression exhibited by these mutations suggest that the products of several touch genes interact. These results are consistent with a model, supported by the known sequences of these genes, that almost all of the touch function genes contribute to the mechanosensory apparatus. PMID:8692859

  19. Iron promotes protein insolubility and aging in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Klang, Ida M.; Schilling, Birgit; Sorensen, Dylan J.; Sahu, Alexandria K.; Kapahi, Pankaj; Andersen, Julie K.; Swoboda, Peter; Killilea, David W.; Gibson, Bradford W.; Lithgow, Gordon J.

    2014-01-01

    Many late-onset proteotoxic diseases are accompanied by a disruption in homeostasis of metals (metallostasis) including iron, copper and zinc. Although aging is the most prominent risk factor for these disorders, the impact of aging on metallostasis and its role in proteotoxic disease remain poorly understood. Moreover, it is not clear whether a loss of metallostasis influences normal aging. We have investigated the role of metallostasis in longevity of Caenorhabditis elegans. We found that calcium, copper, iron, and manganese levels increase as a function of age, while potassium and phosphorus levels tend to decrease. Increased dietary iron significantly accelerated the age-related accumulation of insoluble protein, a molecular pathology of aging. Proteomic analysis revealed widespread effects of dietary iron in multiple organelles and tissues. Pharmacological interventions to block accumulation of specific metals attenuated many models of proteotoxicity and extended normal lifespan. Collectively, these results suggest that a loss of metallostasis with aging contributes to age-related protein aggregation. PMID:25554795

  20. Malate and Fumarate Extend Lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Edwards, Clare B.; Copes, Neil; Brito, Andres G.; Canfield, John; Bradshaw, Patrick C.

    2013-01-01

    Malate, the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle metabolite, increased lifespan and thermotolerance in the nematode C. elegans. Malate can be synthesized from fumarate by the enzyme fumarase and further oxidized to oxaloacetate by malate dehydrogenase with the accompanying reduction of NAD. Addition of fumarate also extended lifespan, but succinate addition did not, although all three intermediates activated nuclear translocation of the cytoprotective DAF-16/FOXO transcription factor and protected from paraquat-induced oxidative stress. The glyoxylate shunt, an anabolic pathway linked to lifespan extension in C. elegans, reversibly converts isocitrate and acetyl-CoA to succinate, malate, and CoA. The increased longevity provided by malate addition did not occur in fumarase (fum-1), glyoxylate shunt (gei-7), succinate dehydrogenase flavoprotein (sdha-2), or soluble fumarate reductase F48E8.3 RNAi knockdown worms. Therefore, to increase lifespan, malate must be first converted to fumarate, then fumarate must be reduced to succinate by soluble fumarate reductase and the mitochondrial electron transport chain complex II. Reduction of fumarate to succinate is coupled with the oxidation of FADH2 to FAD. Lifespan extension induced by malate depended upon the longevity regulators DAF-16 and SIR-2.1. Malate supplementation did not extend the lifespan of long-lived eat-2 mutant worms, a model of dietary restriction. Malate and fumarate addition increased oxygen consumption, but decreased ATP levels and mitochondrial membrane potential suggesting a mild uncoupling of oxidative phosphorylation. Malate also increased NADPH, NAD, and the NAD/NADH ratio. Fumarate reduction, glyoxylate shunt activity, and mild mitochondrial uncoupling likely contribute to the lifespan extension induced by malate and fumarate by increasing the amount of oxidized NAD and FAD cofactors. PMID:23472183

  1. Metabolome and proteome changes with aging in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Copes, Neil; Edwards, Clare; Chaput, Dale; Saifee, Mariam; Barjuca, Iosif; Nelson, Daniel; Paraggio, Alyssa; Saad, Patrick; Lipps, David; Stevens, Stanley M; Bradshaw, Patrick C

    2015-12-01

    To expand the understanding of aging in the model organism Caenorhabditis elegans, global quantification of metabolite and protein levels in young and aged nematodes was performed using mass spectrometry. With age, there was a decreased abundance of proteins functioning in transcription termination, mRNA degradation, mRNA stability, protein synthesis, and proteasomal function. Furthermore, there was altered S-adenosyl methionine metabolism as well as a decreased abundance of the S-adenosyl methionine synthetase (SAMS-1) protein. Other aging-related changes included alterations in free fatty acid levels and composition, decreased levels of ribosomal proteins, decreased levels of NADP-dependent isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH1), a shift in the cellular redox state, an increase in sorbitol content, alterations in free amino acid levels, and indications of altered muscle function and sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) homeostasis. There were also decreases in pyrimidine and purine metabolite levels, most markedly nitrogenous bases. Supplementing the culture medium with cytidine (a pyrimidine nucleoside) or hypoxanthine (a purine base) increased lifespan slightly, suggesting that aging-induced alterations in ribonucleotide metabolism affect lifespan. An age-related increase in body size, lipotoxicity from ectopic yolk lipoprotein accumulation, a decline in NAD(+) levels, and mitochondrial electron transport chain dysfunction may explain many of these changes. In addition, dietary restriction in aged worms resulting from sarcopenia of the pharyngeal pump likely decreases the abundance of SAMS-1, possibly leading to decreased phosphatidylcholine levels, larger lipid droplets, and ER and mitochondrial stress. The complementary use of proteomics and metabolomics yielded unique insights into the molecular processes altered with age in C. elegans. PMID:26390854

  2. Behavioral response of Caenorhabditis elegans to localized thermal stimuli

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Nociception evokes a rapid withdrawal behavior designed to protect the animal from potential danger. C. elegans performs a reflexive reversal or forward locomotory response when presented with noxious stimuli at the head or tail, respectively. Here, we have developed an assay with precise spatial and temporal control of an infrared laser stimulus that targets one-fifth of the worm’s body and quantifies multiple aspects of the worm’s escape response. Results When stimulated at the head, we found that the escape response can be elicited by changes in temperature as small as a fraction of a degree Celsius, and that aspects of the escape behavior such as the response latency and the escape direction change advantageously as the amplitude of the noxious stimulus increases. We have mapped the behavioral receptive field of thermal nociception along the entire body of the worm, and show a midbody avoidance behavior distinct from the head and tail responses. At the midbody, the worm is sensitive to a change in the stimulus location as small as 80 ?m. This midbody response is probabilistic, producing either a backward, forward or pause state after the stimulus. The distribution of these states shifts from reverse-biased to forward-biased as the location of the stimulus moves from the middle towards the anterior or posterior of the worm, respectively. We identified PVD as the thermal nociceptor for the midbody response using calcium imaging, genetic ablation and laser ablation. Analyses of mutants suggest the possibility that TRPV channels and glutamate are involved in facilitating the midbody noxious response. Conclusion Through high resolution quantitative behavioral analysis, we have comprehensively characterized the C. elegans escape response to noxious thermal stimuli applied along its body, and found a novel midbody response. We further identified the nociceptor PVD as required to sense noxious heat at the midbody and can spatially differentiate localized thermal stimuli. PMID:23822173

  3. Benzophenones from Hypericum elegans with antioxidant and acetylcholinesterase inhibitory potential

    PubMed Central

    Zheleva-Dimitrova, Dimitrina; Nedialkov, Paraskev; Momekov, Georgi

    2013-01-01

    Background: Hypericum elegans is used in Bulgarian folk medicine for treatment of wounds, depression, gastrointestinal and bacterial diseases. Objective: Recently, new natural benzophenones: Elegaphenone and O-glycosides: Hypericophenonoside, Neoannulatophenonoside and Elegaphenonoside as well as already known 7-Epiclusianone were isolated from the titled species. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the antioxidant and acetyl cholinesterase inhibitory potential of the isolated compounds. Materials and Methods: 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and 2,2’-azino-bis(3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid) di-ammonium salt (ABTS) free radicals, ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) assay as well as inhibition of lipid peroxidation in linoleic acid system were used for determination of antioxidant activity. Modified Ellman's colorimetric method was carried out to assess the acetyl cholinesterase inhibition potential. Hyperoside and Galantamine hydrobromide were used as positive controls. Results: Hypericophenonoside was found to possess the strongest DPPH radical scavenging activity (IC50 = 181.85 ± 6.82 ?M), while Neoannulatophenonoside showed the highest ABTS (IC50 = 0.25 ± 0.005 ?M) and lipid peroxidation inhibitor activity. FRAP activity was demonstrated only by prenylated aglycones – Elegaphenone [942.16 ± 4.03 ?M Trolox Equivalent (TE)] and 7-Epiclusianone (642.95 ± 3.95 ?M TE) and was stronger compared to the control Hyperoside (421.75 ± 9.29 ?M TE). Elegaphenone and 7-Epiclusianone were found to possess moderate acetyl cholinesterase inhibitory potential with IC50 values of 192.19 ± 3.54 ?M and 142.97 ± 4.62 ?M, respectively. Conclusion: The results obtained revealed that H. elegans is a potential natural source of bioactive compounds and benzophenones could be useful in therapy of free radical pathologies and neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:24143038

  4. Generation of Transgenic C. elegans by Biolistic Transformation

    PubMed Central

    Hochbaum, Daniel; Ferguson, Annabel A.; Fisher, Alfred L.

    2010-01-01

    The number of laboratories using the free living nematode C. elegans is rapidly growing. The popularity of this biological model is attributed to a rapid generation time and short life span, easy and inexpensive maintenance, fully sequenced genome, and array of RNAi resources and mutant animals. Additionally, analysis of the C. elegans genome revealed a great similarity between worms and higher vertebrates, which suggests that research in worms could be an important adjunct to studies performed in whole mice or cultured cells. A powerful and important part of worm research is the ability to use transgenic animals to study gene localization and function. Transgenic animals can be created either via microinjection of the worm germline or through the use of biolistic bombardment. Bombardment is a newer technique and is less familiar to a number of labs. Here we describe a simple protocol to generate transgenic worms by biolistic bombardment with gold particles using the Bio-Rad PDS-1000 system. Compared with DNA microinjection into hermaphrodite germline, this protocol has the advantage of not requiring special skills from the operator with regards to identifying worm anatomy or performing microinjection. Further multiple transgenic lines are usually obtained from a single bombardment. Also in contrast to microinjection, biolistic bombardment produces transgenic animals with both extrachromosomal arrays and integrated transgenes. The ability to obtain integrated transgenic lines can avoid the use of mutagenic protocols to integrate foreign DNA. In conclusion, biolistic bombardment can be an attractive method for the generation of transgenic animals, especially for investigators not interested in investing the time and effort needed to become skilled at microinjection. PMID:20811328

  5. Genome Sequence of Phytophthora fragariae var. fragariae, a Quarantine Plant-Pathogenic Fungus

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Ruifang; Cheng, Yinghui; Wang, Ying; Wang, Ying; Guo, Liyun

    2015-01-01

    Phytophthora fragariae var. fragariae is a serious plant-pathogenic fungus causing red core disease in strawberries, resulting in a larger number of fruit produced, and the fungus has been regulated as a quarantine pest of many countries and regions. Here, we announce the genome sequence of P. fragariae var. fragariae, and this information might provide insight into the mechanism of pathogenicity and host specificity of this pathogen, as well as help us further identify targets for fungicides. PMID:25814589

  6. A Framework to Quantify the Economic Benefit from Local VAR Compensation

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Fangxing; Zhang, Wenjuan; Tolbert, Leon M; Kueck, John D; Rizy, D Tom

    2008-01-01

    Abstract It is generally accepted that reactive power (or Var) compensation will bring benefits for utilities and industrial customers by providing local voltage and power factor support. However, there is a lack of a systematic approach to quantitatively identify the economic benefit. In addition, with the deregulation and restructuring, it is important to indicate the amount of benefit that each market participant may potentially receive given the right price signals. If such information can be easily obtained and presented, it will be more convenient for decision-markers to determine the cost benefit sharing of installing a Var compensator. This vision of this paper is to lay out a possible method for quantitatively evaluating the benefits from local reactive power compensation. The approach is to quantify the benefits into several categories such as reduced losses, shifting reactive power flow to real power flow, and increased transfer. The calculation of these benefits are illustrated with a simple two-bus power system model and then presented with a more complicated model using Optimal Power Flow to calculate the benefits. Simulation on the more complex system is conducted with seven buses in two areas. The simulation results show that the possible economic benefits can be significant, if compared with capacity payments to central generators or payment of power factor penalties applied by utilities. The potential economic value of local Var compensation may give various parties in electricity supply, delivery and end-use consumption a better understanding of the Var benefits to assist their cost-benefit analysis for Var compensation installation. Sensitivity analysis is also provided to illustrate that the benefits may not be monotonically increasing. Also, this paper suggests that the future reactive power market should consider local Var providers or other way to encourage load Var capability, since local Var benefit is significant.

  7. A Framework to Quantify the Economic Impact from Local VAR Compensation

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Fangxing; Zhang, Wenjuan; Tolbert, Leon M; Kueck, John D; Rizy, D Tom

    2008-01-01

    It is generally accepted that reactive power (or Var) compensation will bring benefits for utilities and industrial customers by providing local voltage and power factor support. However, there is a lack of a systematic approach to quantitatively identify the economic benefit. In addition, with deregulation and restructuring, it is important to indicate the amount of benefit that each market participant may potentially receive given the right price signals. If such information can be easily obtained and presented, it will be more convenient for decision-markers to determine the cost benefit sharing of installing a Var compensator. The vision of this paper is to lay out a possible method for quantitatively evaluating the benefits from local reactive power compensation. The approach is to quantify the benefits into several categories such as reduced losses, shifting reactive power flow to real power flow, and increased transfer. The calculation of these benefits are illustrated with a simple two-bus power system model and then presented with a more complicated model using Optimal Power Flow to calculate the benefits. Simulation on the more complex system is conducted with seven buses in two areas. The simulation results show that the possible economic benefits can be significant, if compared with capacity payments to central generators or payment of power factor penalties applied by utilities. The potential economic value of local Var compensation may give various parties in electricity supply, delivery and end-use consumption a better understanding of the Var benefits to assist their cost-benefit analysis for Var compensation installation. Sensitivity analysis is also provided to illustrate that the benefits may not be monotonically increasing. Also, this paper suggests that the future reactive power market should consider local Var providers or other way to encourage load Var capability, since local Var benefit is significant.

  8. ClinVar: public archive of relationships among sequence variation and human phenotype.

    PubMed

    Landrum, Melissa J; Lee, Jennifer M; Riley, George R; Jang, Wonhee; Rubinstein, Wendy S; Church, Deanna M; Maglott, Donna R

    2014-01-01

    ClinVar (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/clinvar/) provides a freely available archive of reports of relationships among medically important variants and phenotypes. ClinVar accessions submissions reporting human variation, interpretations of the relationship of that variation to human health and the evidence supporting each interpretation. The database is tightly coupled with dbSNP and dbVar, which maintain information about the location of variation on human assemblies. ClinVar is also based on the phenotypic descriptions maintained in MedGen (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/medgen). Each ClinVar record represents the submitter, the variation and the phenotype, i.e. the unit that is assigned an accession of the format SCV000000000.0. The submitter can update the submission at any time, in which case a new version is assigned. To facilitate evaluation of the medical importance of each variant, ClinVar aggregates submissions with the same variation/phenotype combination, adds value from other NCBI databases, assigns a distinct accession of the format RCV000000000.0 and reports if there are conflicting clinical interpretations. Data in ClinVar are available in multiple formats, including html, download as XML, VCF or tab-delimited subsets. Data from ClinVar are provided as annotation tracks on genomic RefSeqs and are used in tools such as Variation Reporter (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/variation/tools/reporter), which reports what is known about variation based on user-supplied locations. PMID:24234437

  9. Weinmannia marquesana var. angustifolia (Cunoniaceae), a new variety from the Marquesas Islands

    PubMed Central

    Lorence, David H.; Wagner, Warren L.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Weinmannia marquesana F. Br. var. angustifolia Lorence & W. L. Wagner, var. nov., a new variety with narrow, simple leaves endemic to Tahuata, Marquesas Islands (French Polynesia) is described and its affinities and conservation status are discussed. It is similar to the other two varieties of this species by having simple leaves, but this new variety has much narrower leaf blades, and it resembles Weinmannia tremuloides in having narrow leaf blades but differs by having simple, not trifoliolate leaves. PMID:22171181

  10. Four-dimensional ensemble variational (4D-En-Var) data assimilation for the HIgh Resolution Limited Area Model (HIRLAM)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gustafsson, N.; Bojarova, J.

    2014-07-01

    A four-dimensional ensemble variational (4D-En-Var) data assimilation has been developed for a limited area model. The integration of tangent linear and adjoint models, as applied in standard 4D-Var, is replaced with the use of an ensemble of non-linear model states to estimate four-dimensional background error covariances over the assimilation time window. The computational costs for 4D-En-Var are therefore significantly reduced in comparison with standard 4D-Var and the scalability of the algorithm is improved. The flow dependency of 4D-En-Var assimilation increments is demonstrated in single simulated observation experiments and compared with corresponding increments from standard 4D-Var and Hybrid 4D-Var ensemble assimilation experiments. Real observation data assimilation experiments carried out over a 6-week period show that 4D-En-Var outperforms standard 4D-Var as well as Hybrid 4D-Var ensemble data assimilation with regard to forecast quality measured by forecast verification scores.

  11. Semi-nonparametric VaR forecasts for hedge funds during the recent crisis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Del Brio, Esther B.; Mora-Valencia, Andrés; Perote, Javier

    2014-05-01

    The need to provide accurate value-at-risk (VaR) forecasting measures has triggered an important literature in econophysics. Although these accurate VaR models and methodologies are particularly demanded for hedge fund managers, there exist few articles specifically devoted to implement new techniques in hedge fund returns VaR forecasting. This article advances in these issues by comparing the performance of risk measures based on parametric distributions (the normal, Student’s t and skewed-t), semi-nonparametric (SNP) methodologies based on Gram-Charlier (GC) series and the extreme value theory (EVT) approach. Our results show that normal-, Student’s t- and Skewed t- based methodologies fail to forecast hedge fund VaR, whilst SNP and EVT approaches accurately success on it. We extend these results to the multivariate framework by providing an explicit formula for the GC copula and its density that encompasses the Gaussian copula and accounts for non-linear dependences. We show that the VaR obtained by the meta GC accurately captures portfolio risk and outperforms regulatory VaR estimates obtained through the meta Gaussian and Student’s t distributions.

  12. Working alliance inventory applied to virtual and augmented reality (WAI-VAR): psychometrics and therapeutic outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Miragall, Marta; Baños, Rosa M.; Cebolla, Ausiàs; Botella, Cristina

    2015-01-01

    This study examines the psychometric properties of the Working Alliance Inventory-Short (WAI-S) adaptation to Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) therapies (WAI-VAR). The relationship between the therapeutic alliance (TA) with VR and AR and clinically significant change (CSC) is also explored. Seventy-five patients took part in this study (74.7% women, Mage = 34.41). Fear of flying and adjustment disorder patients received VR therapy, and cockroach phobia patients received AR therapy. Psychometric properties, CSC, one-way ANOVA, Spearman’s Correlations and Multiple Regression were calculated. The WAI-VAR showed a unidimensional structure, high internal consistency and adequate convergent validity. “Not changed” patients scored lower on the WAI-VAR than “improved” and “recovered” patients. Correlation between the WAI-VAR and CSC was moderate. The best fitting model for predicting CSC was a linear combination of the TA with therapist (WAI-S) and the TA with VR and AR (WAI-VAR), due to the latter variable slightly increased the percentage of variability accounted for in CSC. The WAI-VAR is the first validated instrument to measure the TA with VR and AR in research and clinical practice. This study reveals the importance of the quality of the TA with technologies in achieving positive outcomes in the therapy. PMID:26500589

  13. Characterization of the antigenicity of Cpl1, a surface protein of Cryptococcus neoformans var. neoformans.

    PubMed

    Cai, Jian-Piao; Liu, Ling-Li; To, Kelvin K W; Lau, Candy C Y; Woo, Patrick C Y; Lau, Susanna K P; Guo, Yong-Hui; Ngan, Antonio H Y; Che, Xiao-Yan; Yuen, Kwok-Yung

    2015-01-01

    Cryptococcus neoformans var. neoformans is an important fungal pathogen. The capsule is a well established virulence factor and a target site for diagnostic tests. The CPL1 gene is required for capsular formation and virulence. The protein product Cpl1 has been proposed to be a secreted protein, but the characteristics of this protein have not been reported. Here we sought to characterize Cpl1. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the Cpl1 of C. neoformans var. neoformans and the Cpl1 orthologs identified in C. neoformans var. grubii and C. gattii formed a distinct cluster among related fungi; while the putative ortholog found in Trichosporon asahii was distantly related to the Cryptococcus cluster. We expressed Cpl1 abundantly as a secreted His-tagged protein in Pichia pastoris. The protein was used to immunize guinea pigs and rabbits for high titer mono-specific polyclonal antibody that was shown to be highly specific against the cell wall of C. neoformans var. neoformans and did not cross react with C. gattii, T. asahii, Aspergillus spp., Candida spp. and Penicillium spp. Using the anti-Cpl1 antibody, we detected Cpl1 protein in the fresh culture supernatant of C. neoformans var. neoformans and we showed by immunostaining that the Cpl1 protein was located on the surface. The Cpl1 protein is a specific surface protein of C. neoformans var. neoformans. PMID:25261494

  14. The mystery of C. elegans aging: an emerging role for fat. Distant parallels between C. elegans aging and metabolic syndrome?

    PubMed

    Ackerman, Daniel; Gems, David

    2012-06-01

    New C. elegans studies imply that lipases and lipid desaturases can mediate signaling effects on aging. But why might fat homeostasis be critical to aging? Could problems with fat handling compromise health in nematodes as they do in mammals? The study of signaling pathways that control longevity could provide the key to one of the great unsolved mysteries of biology: the mechanism of aging. But as our view of the regulatory pathways that control aging grows ever clearer, the nature of aging itself has, if anything, grown more obscure. In particular, focused investigations of the oxidative damage theory have raised questions about an old assumption: that a fundamental cause of aging is accumulation of molecular damage. Could fat dyshomeostasis instead be critical? PMID:22371137

  15. RNAi screening of human glycogene orthologs in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and the construction of the C. elegans glycogene database

    PubMed Central

    Akiyoshi, Sayaka; Nomura, Kazuko H; Dejima, Katsufumi; Murata, Daisuke; Matsuda, Ayako; Kanaki, Nanako; Takaki, Tetsuro; Mihara, Hiroyuki; Nagaishi, Takayuki; Furukawa, Shuhei; Ando, Keiko-Gengyo; Yoshina, Sawako; Mitani, Shohei; Togayachi, Akira; Suzuki, Yoshinori; Shikanai, Toshihide; Narimatsu, Hisashi; Nomura, Kazuya

    2015-01-01

    In this study, we selected 181 nematode glycogenes that are orthologous to human glycogenes and examined their RNAi phenotypes. The results are deposited in the Caenorhabditis elegans Glycogene Database (CGGDB) at AIST, Tsukuba, Japan. The most prominent RNAi phenotypes observed are disruptions of cell cycle progression in germline mitosis/meiosis and in early embryonic cell mitosis. Along with the previously reported roles of chondroitin proteoglycans, glycosphingolipids and GPI-anchored proteins in cell cycle progression, we show for the first time that the inhibition of the functions of N-glycan synthesis genes (cytoplasmic alg genes) resulted in abnormal germline formation, ER stress and small body size phenotypes. The results provide additional information on the roles of glycoconjugates in the cell cycle progression mechanisms of germline and embryonic cells. PMID:25091817

  16. Micropropagation of globe artichoke (Cynara cardunculus L. var. scolymus).

    PubMed

    Iapichino, Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    The globe artichoke (Cynara cardunculus L. var. scolymus) is a perennial plant cultivated in the Mediterranean region and the Americas for its edible young flower heads. Although vegetative propagation by offshoots or by "ovoli" (underground dormant axillary buds) has been the primary method of propagation, the potential for the diffusion of diseases and the phenotypic variability can be very high. The propagation of this species by axillary shoot proliferation from in vitro-cultured meristems produces systemic pathogen-free plants and a higher multiplication rate as compared to that obtained by conventional agamic multiplication. Axillary shoot proliferation can be induced from excised shoot apices cultured on Murashige and Skoog agar solidified medium supplemented with various concentrations of cytokinins and auxins, depending on genotype. For the production of virus-free plants, meristems, 0.3-0.8 mm long are excised from shoot apices and surface sterilized. The transfer of artichoke microshoots to a medium lacking cytokinins or with low cytokinin concentration is critical for rooting. Adventitious roots develop within 3-5 weeks after transfer to root induction MS medium containing NAA or IAA at various concentrations. However, in vitro rooting frequency rate is dependent on the genotype and the protocol used. Acclimatization of in vitro microshoots having 3-4 roots is successfully accomplished; plantlets develop new roots in ex vitro conditions and continue to grow. PMID:23179714

  17. Genetic dissection of agronomic traits in Capsicum baccatum var. pendulum.

    PubMed

    Moulin, M M; Rodrigues, R; Bento, C S; Gonçalves, L S A; Santos, J O; Sudré, C P; Viana, A P

    2015-01-01

    Genetic mapping is very useful for dissecting complex agronomic traits. Genetic mapping allows for identification of quantitative trait loci (QTL), provide knowledge on a gene position and its adjacent region, and enable prediction of evolutionary mechanisms, in addition to contributing to synteny studies. The aim of this study was to predict genetic values associated with different agronomic traits evaluated in an F2 population of Capsicum baccatum var. pendulum. Previously, a reference genetic map for C. baccatum was constructed, which included 183 markers (42 microsatellite, 85 inter-simple sequence repeat, and 56 random amplification of polymorphic DNA) arranged in 16 linkage groups. The map was used to identify QTL associated with 11 agronomic traits, including plant height, crown diameter, number of days to flowering, days to fruiting, number of fruits per plant, average fruit weight, fruit length, fruit diameter, fruit pulp thickness, soluble solids, and fruit dry weight. QTL mapping was performed by standard interval mapping. The number of small QTL effects ranged from 3-11, with a total of 61 QTL detected in 9 linkage groups. This is the first report involving QTL analysis for C. baccatum species. PMID:25867359

  18. De Novo Transcriptome Analysis of Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyun A; Shin, Ah-Young; Lee, Min-Seon; Lee, Hee-Jeong; Lee, Heung-Ryul; Ahn, Jongmoon; Nahm, Seokhyeon; Jo, Sung-Hwan; Park, Jeong Mee; Kwon, Suk-Yoon

    2016-01-01

    Oriental melon (Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa) is one of six subspecies of melon and is cultivated widely in East Asia, including China, Japan, and Korea. Although oriental melon is economically valuable in Asia and is genetically distinct from other subspecies, few reports of genome-scale research on oriental melon have been published. We generated 30.5 and 36.8 Gb of raw RNA sequence data from the female and male flowers, leaves, roots, and fruit of two oriental melon varieties, Korean landrace (KM) and Breeding line of NongWoo Bio Co. (NW), respectively. From the raw reads, 64,998 transcripts from KM and 100,234 transcripts from NW were de novo assembled. The assembled transcripts were used to identify molecular markers (e.g., single-nucleotide polymorphisms and simple sequence repeats), detect tissue-specific expressed genes, and construct a genetic linkage map. In total, 234 single-nucleotide polymorphisms and 25 simple sequence repeats were screened from 7,871 and 8,052 candidates, respectively, between the KM and NW varieties and used for construction of a genetic map with 94 F2 population specimens. The genetic linkage map consisted of 12 linkage groups, and 248 markers were assigned. These transcriptome and molecular marker data provide information useful for molecular breeding of oriental melon and further comparative studies of the Cucurbitaceae family. PMID:26743902

  19. De Novo Transcriptome Analysis of Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyun A; Shin, Ah-Young; Lee, Min-Seon; Lee, Hee-Jeong; Lee, Heung-Ryul; Ahn, Jongmoon; Nahm, Seokhyeon; Jo, Sung-Hwan; Park, Jeong Mee; Kwon, Suk-Yoon

    2016-02-29

    Oriental melon (Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa) is one of six subspecies of melon and is cultivated widely in East Asia, including China, Japan, and Korea. Although oriental melon is economically valuable in Asia and is genetically distinct from other subspecies, few reports of genome-scale research on oriental melon have been published. We generated 30.5 and 36.8 Gb of raw RNA sequence data from the female and male flowers, leaves, roots, and fruit of two oriental melon varieties, Korean landrace (KM) and Breeding line of NongWoo Bio Co. (NW), respectively. From the raw reads, 64,998 transcripts from KM and 100,234 transcripts from NW were de novo assembled. The assembled transcripts were used to identify molecular markers (e.g., single-nucleotide polymorphisms and simple sequence repeats), detect tissue-specific expressed genes, and construct a genetic linkage map. In total, 234 single-nucleotide polymorphisms and 25 simple sequence repeats were screened from 7,871 and 8,052 candidates, respectively, between the KM and NW varieties and used for construction of a genetic map with 94 F2 population specimens. The genetic linkage map consisted of 12 linkage groups, and 248 markers were assigned. These transcriptome and molecular marker data provide information useful for molecular breeding of oriental melon and further comparative studies of the Cucurbitaceae family. PMID:26743902

  20. Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation of Narcissus tazzeta var. chinensis.

    PubMed

    Lu, Gang; Zou, Qingcheng; Guo, Deping; Zhuang, Xiaoying; Yu, Xiaolin; Xiang, Xun; Cao, Jiashu

    2007-09-01

    Phytoene synthase (PSY), as a key regulatory enzyme for carotene biosynthesis, plays an important role in regulating color formation in many species. In the present study, a protocol was developed for the transformation of Narcissus tazzeta var chinensis using Agrobacterium tumefaciens strain LBA4404 harboring a binary vector pCAMBIA1301 plasmid which contained an antisense phytoene synthase gene, a reporter beta-glucuronidase gene and a selectable marker hygromycin phosphotransferase gene. Effects of some factors on efficiency of transformation and regeneration were examined. Preculture of the explants for 6 days before inoculation enhanced the transient GUS expression. The addition of acetosyringone (AS) at 100 micromol l(-1) for inoculation and a period of 3 days co-cultivation yielded efficient transient GUS expression. Transformants were obtained through selection on MS medium containing 5 mg l(-1) 6-benzylaminopurine (BA), 0.1 mg l(-1)alpha-naphthalene acetic acid (NAA) and 40 mg l(-1) hygromycin. The transformation frequency was 1.24% based on PCR analysis of gus gene. One or two copies of transgene were demonstrated in different transformations by Southern blotting analyses. Northern blotting results confirmed that the transcription of the endogenous psy gene in transgenic plants was inhibited or silenced. The method reported here provides new opportunities for improvement of quality traits of Narcissus tazzeta via genetic transformation. PMID:17541598

  1. Decarboxylation of ?-Keto Acids by Streptococcus lactis var. maltigenes1

    PubMed Central

    Tucker, J. S.; Morgan, M. E.

    1967-01-01

    Decarboxylation rates for a series of C-3 to C-6 ?-keto acids were determined in the presence of resting cells and cell-free extracts of Streptococcus lactis var. maltigenes. The C-5 and C-6 acids branched at the penultimate carbon atom were converted most rapidly to the respective aldehydes in the manner described for ?-carboxylases. Pyruvate and ?-ketobutyrate did not behave as ?-carboxylase substrates, in that O2 was absorbed when they were reacted with resting cells. The same effect with pyruvate was noted in a nonmalty S. lactis, accounting for CO2 produced by some “homofermentative” streptococci. Mixed substrate reactions indicated that the same enzyme was responsible for decarboxylation of ?-ketoisocaproate and ?-ketoisovalerate, but it appeared unlikely that this enzyme was responsible for the decarboxylation of pyruvate. Ultrasonic disruption of cells of the malty culture resulted in an extract inactive for decarboxylation of pyruvate in the absence of ferricyanide. Dialyzed cell-free extracts were inactive against all keto acids and could not be reactivated. PMID:6049293

  2. Transport of Bacillus Thuringiensis var. Kurstaki Via Fomites

    PubMed Central

    Van Cuyk, Sheila; Veal, Lee Ann B.; Simpson, Beverley

    2011-01-01

    The intentional and controlled release of an aerosolized bacterium provides an opportunity to investigate the implications of a biological attack. Since 2006, Los Alamos National Laboratory has worked with several urban areas, including Fairfax County, VA, to design experiments to evaluate biodefense concepts of operations using routine spraying of Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki (Btk). Btk is dispersed in large quantities as a slurry to control the gypsy moth, Lymantria dispar. Understanding whether personnel and equipment pick up residual contamination during sampling activities and transport it to other areas is critical for the formulation of appropriate response and recovery plans. While there is a growing body of literature surrounding the transmission of viral diseases via fomites, there is limited information on the transport of Bacillus species via this route. In 2008, LANL investigated whether field sampling activities conducted near sprayed areas, post-spray, resulted in measurable cross-contamination of sampling personnel, equipment, vehicles, and hotel rooms. Viable Btk was detected in all sample types, indicating transport of the agent occurred via fomites. PMID:21882970

  3. Abietane diterpenoids from Isodon lophanthoides var. graciliflorus and their cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Wenting; Xie, Haihui; Wu, Ping; Wei, Xiaoyi

    2013-01-15

    Seven new (1-7) and three known (8-10) abietane diterpenoids were isolated from the methanolic extract of the aerial parts of Isodon lophanthoides var. graciliflorus (Lamiaceae), a folk Chinese medicine and an herb for functional beverages. They were identified as 16-acetoxylsugiol (1), graciliflorin E (2), graciliflorin F (3), 15-O-methylgraciliflorin F (4), 15-hydroxy-20-deoxocarnosol (5), 3?-hydroxysempervirol (6), 15-hydroxy-1-oxosalvibretol (7), abieta-8,11,13-triene-14,19-diol (8), 6,12,15-trihydroxy-5,8,11,13-abietatetraen-7-one (9), and 3?-hinokiol (10) based on the spectroscopic data including COSY (correlated spectroscopy), HMBC (heteronuclear multiple bond correlation), and HR-ESI-MS (high-resolution electrospray ionization mass spectrometry). All the compounds except 10 were obtained from I. lophanthoides for the first time. Compounds 1, 2, 5, 6, 8, and 9 exhibited in vitro cytotoxicity against A549 (human lung adenocarcinoma), MCF-7 (human breast adenocarcinoma), and HeLa (human cervical carcinoma) cell lines with the IC(50) values of 1.79-52.67 ?M. PMID:23122169

  4. Toxicological assessment of nattokinase derived from Bacillus subtilis var. natto.

    PubMed

    Lampe, Bradley J; English, J Caroline

    2016-02-01

    Subtilisin NAT, commonly known as "nattokinase," is a fibrinolytic enzyme produced by the bacterial strain B. subtilis var. natto, which plays a central role in the fermentation of soybeans into the popular Japanese food natto. Recent studies have reported on the potential anticoagulatory and antihypertensive effects of nattokinase administration in humans, with no indication of adverse effects. To evaluate the safety of nattokinase in a more comprehensive manner, several GLP-compliant studies in rodents and human volunteers have been conducted with the enzyme product, NSK-SD (Japan Bio Science Laboratory Co., Ltd., Japan). Nattokinase was non-mutagenic and non-clastogenic in vitro, and no adverse effects were observed in 28-day and 90-day subchronic toxicity studies conducted in Sprague-Dawley rats at doses up to 167 mg/kg-day and 1000 mg/kg-day, respectively. Mice inoculated with 7.55 × 10(8) CFU of the enzyme-producing bacterial strain showed no signs of toxicity or residual tissue concentrations of viable bacteria. Additionally consumption of 10 mg/kg-day nattokinase for 4 weeks was well tolerated in healthy human volunteers. These findings suggest that the oral consumption of nattokinase is of low toxicological concern. The 90-day oral subchronic NOAEL for nattokinase in male and female Sprague-Dawley rats is 1000 mg/kg-day, the highest dose tested. PMID:26740078

  5. On-chip analysis of C. elegans muscular forces and locomotion patterns in microstructured environments.

    PubMed

    Johari, Shazlina; Nock, Volker; Alkaisi, Maan M; Wang, Wenhui

    2013-05-01

    The understanding of force interplays between an organism and its environment is imperative in biological processes. Noticeably scarce from the study of C. elegans locomotion is the measurement of the nematode locomotion forces together with other important locomotive metrics. To bridge the current gap, we present the investigation of C. elegans muscular forces and locomotion metrics (speed, amplitude and wavelength) in one single assay. This assay uses polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) micropillars as force sensing elements and, by variation of the pillar arrangement, introduces microstructure. To show the usefulness of the assay, twelve wild-type C. elegans sample worms were tested to obtain a total of 4665 data points. The experimental results lead to several key findings. These include: (1) maximum force is exerted when the pillar is in contact with the middle part of the worm body, (2) C. elegans locomotion forces are highly dependent on the structure of the surrounding environment, (3) the worms' undulation frequency and locomotion speed increases steadily from the narrow spacing of 'honeycomb' design to the wider spacing of 'lattice' pillar arrangement, and (4) C. elegans maintained their natural sinusoidal movement in the microstructured device, despite the existence of PDMS micropillars. The assay presented here focuses on wild type C. elegans, but the method can be easily applied to its mutants and other organisms. In addition, we also show that, by inverting the measurement device, worm locomotion behaviour can be studied in various substrate environments normally unconducive to flexible pillar fabrication. The quantitative measurements demonstrated in this work further improve the understanding of C. elegans mechanosensation and locomotion. PMID:23511608

  6. In vitro antioxidant and anticancer effects of solvent fractions from prunella vulgaris var. lilacina

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Recently, considerable attention has been focused on exploring the potential antioxidant properties of plant extracts or isolated products of plant origin. Prunella vulgaris var. lilacina is widely distributed in Korea, Japan, China, and Europe, and it continues to be used to treat inflammation, eye pain, headache, and dizziness. However, reports on the antioxidant activities of P. vulgaris var. lilacina are limited, particularly concerning the relationship between its phenolic content and antioxidant capacity. In this study, we investigated the antioxidant and anticancer activities of an ethanol extract from P. vulgaris var. lilacina and its fractions. Methods Dried powder of P. vulgaris var. lilacina was extracted with ethanol, and the extract was fractionated to produce the hexane fraction, butanol fraction, chloroform fraction and residual water fraction. The phenolic content was assayed using the Folin-Ciocalteu colorimetric method. Subsequently, the antioxidant activities of the ethanol extract and its fractions were analyzed employing various antioxidant assay methods including DPPH, FRAP, ABTS, SOD activity and production of reactive oxygen species. Additionally, the extract and fractions were assayed for their ability to exert cytotoxic activities on various cancer cells using the MTT assay. We also investigated the expression of genes associated with apoptotic cell death by RT-PCR. Results The total phenolic contents of the ethanol extract and water fraction of P. vulgaris var. lilacina were 303.66 and 322.80 mg GAE/g dry weight (or fractions), respectively. The results showed that the ethanol extract and the water fraction of P. vulgaris var. lilacina had higher antioxidant content than other solvent fractions, similar to their total phenolic content. Anticancer activity was also tested using the HepG2, HT29, A549, MKN45 and HeLa cancer cell lines. The results clearly demonstrated that the P. vulgaris var. lilacina ethanol extract induced significant cytotoxic effects on the various cancer cell lines, and these effects were stronger than those induced by the P. vulgaris var. lilacina solvent fractions. We also investigated the expression of genes associated with apoptotic cell death. We confirmed that the P. vulgaris var. lilacina ethanol extract and water fraction significantly increased the expression of p53, Bax and Fas. Conclusions These results suggest that the ethanol extract from P. vulgaris var. lilacina and its fractions could be applied as natural sources of antioxidants and anticancer activities in food and in the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:24206840

  7. Precision measurement of the direct CP violation parameter. var epsilon. prime /. var epsilon. via the four K yields 2. pi. decay modes and a high sensitivity search for CP violating rare K sub L decays, Task J

    SciTech Connect

    Wah, Yau W.

    1992-04-01

    This report discusses the progress on the measurement of the direct CP violation parameter {var epsilon}{prime}/{var epsilon} and the rare KL decay. The progress has been as follows: (A) results from the complete E731 data set which was collected in the 1987/88 fixed target run; preparations for and the taking of the data for (B) E773 (CPT symmetry test) and (C) E799 (rare decay study); and finally (D) R D for a new detector to further study {var epsilon}{prime}/{var epsilon} and rate decays.

  8. Genetic Linkage Map of Citrullus lanatus var. Citroides Chromosomal Segments Introgressed into the Watermelon Cultivar Crimson Sweet (Citrullus lanatus var. lanatus) Genome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    There is need to develop of introgression lines, useful for genetic studies and genetic enhancement of watermelon. In this study, we used an advanced recombinant population (BC2F2) to identify and map chromosomal segments of the wild watermelon Citrullus lanatus var. citroides that were incorporate...

  9. Identification of a gonadotropin-releasing hormone receptor orthologue in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Vadakkadath Meethal, Sivan; Gallego, Miguel J; Haasl, Ryan J; Petras, Stephen J; Sgro, Jean-Yves; Atwood, Craig S

    2006-01-01

    Background The Caenorhabditis elegans genome is known to code for at least 1149 G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), but the GPCR(s) critical to the regulation of reproduction in this nematode are not yet known. This study examined whether GPCRs orthologous to human gonadotropin-releasing hormone receptor (GnRHR) exist in C. elegans. Results Our sequence analyses indicated the presence of two proteins in C. elegans, one of 401 amino acids [GenBank: NP_491453; WormBase: F54D7.3] and another of 379 amino acids [GenBank: NP_506566; WormBase: C15H11.2] with 46.9% and 44.7% nucleotide similarity to human GnRHR1 and GnRHR2, respectively. Like human GnRHR1, structural analysis of the C. elegans GnRHR1 orthologue (Ce-GnRHR) predicted a rhodopsin family member with 7 transmembrane domains, G protein coupling sites and phosphorylation sites for protein kinase C. Of the functionally important amino acids in human GnRHR1, 56% were conserved in the C. elegans orthologue. Ce-GnRHR was actively transcribed in adult worms and immunoanalyses using antibodies generated against both human and C. elegans GnRHR indicated the presence of a 46-kDa protein, the calculated molecular mass of the immature Ce-GnRHR. Ce-GnRHR staining was specifically localized to the germline, intestine and pharynx. In the germline and intestine, Ce-GnRHR was localized specifically to nuclei as revealed by colocalization with a DNA nuclear stain. However in the pharynx, Ce-GnRHR was localized to the myofilament lattice of the pharyngeal musculature, suggesting a functional role for Ce-GnRHR signaling in the coupling of food intake with reproduction. Phylogenetic analyses support an early evolutionary origin of GnRH-like receptors, as evidenced by the hypothesized grouping of Ce-GnRHR, vertebrate GnRHRs, a molluscan GnRHR, and the adipokinetic hormone receptors (AKHRs) and corazonin receptors of arthropods. Conclusion This is the first report of a GnRHR orthologue in C. elegans, which shares significant similarity with insect AKHRs. In vertebrates, GnRHRs are central components of the reproductive endocrine system, and the identification of a GnRHR orthologue in C. elegans suggests the potential use of C. elegans as a model system to study reproductive endocrinology. PMID:17134503

  10. Study about locomotory ability of dystrophin-defected C.elegans after spaceflight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Ying; Sun, Yeqing; Lei, Huang; Xu, Dan

    2012-07-01

    Space microgravity could induce a variety of biological changes such as muscular atrophy. Recent studies show that gravisensing is a key point in muscular atrophy process, but the molecular mechanism is still unknown. Dystrophin, a muscle-related protein, plays an important role in muscle development. It is reported that mutation of human dystrophin gene could cause muscular atrophy. In this study, we focus on whether dystrophin gene acts as a gravisensing factor and observe locomotory ability of dystrophin-defected Caenorhabditis elegans (C.elegans) after spaceflight. We used wild-type (WT) and dystrophin-defected (dys-1) mutant of C.elegans, which were cultured to dauer stage and sent to space by Shenzhou 8 spacecraft (from Nov 1st to 17th, 2011). These worms were divided into three groups: space group (space radiation and microgravity conditions), space control group (space radiation and chmetcnvTCSC0NumberType1NegativeFalseHasSpaceFalseSourceValue1UnitNameg1g centrifuge force conditions) and ground control group.We already observed the progeny (generation F1 and F2) of worms which were sent to space, the movement of C. elegans is restricted to a two-dimensional sinusoidal pattern, and evaluated locomotory ability by the ratio (length/width) in crawl trace wave of C. elegans. The increased value of ratio indicates the decrease in locomotory ability of C. elegans. Our results from generation F1 showed that WT worms in space group(7.7±1.8) demonstrated the significant decrease in locomotory ability about 15%, compared with those in space control group(6.7±1.2). This finding indicates that locomotory ability of C. elegans progeny could be affected by microgravity in space environment. In comparison to the obvious difference in ratio between space group and space control group for WT worms, there is no significant difference between two space groups of generation F2 .For dys-1 mutant of C.elegans (generation F1 and F2), the results show that dystrophin deficiency results in no response to microgravity, compared with WT, suggesting that dys-1 gene plays a role in locomotory ability under ground gravity. Further, we performed all genome microarray analysis and found that expression of several muscle-related genes in dys-1 mutant groups were also changed, accompanied with changes in biological processes such as oxidation, protein modification and metabolic process. Our findings suggest that dystrophin gene could act as a gravisensing and affect locomotory ability of C. elegans progeny.

  11. Assessment of selenium toxicity on the life cycle of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Li, Wen-Hsuan; Ju, Yun-Ru; Liao, Chung-Min; Liao, Vivian Hsiu-Chuan

    2014-09-01

    Selenium (Se) is a growing problem of global concern. Se can cause adverse effects on reproductive systems, which have been linked to declines in animal populations. The soil nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is a ubiquitous soil organism that is increasingly utilized as a model organism in aquatic and soil toxicology. In the present study, the experimental data for individual body length, survival rate, brood size, and hatching rate were used to evaluate the possible effects of selenite [Se(IV)] on C. elegans. A stage-classified matrix model was applied to the experimental data to provide information on the population dynamics of C. elegans and to assess the Se(IV)-affected asymptotic population growth rate. Estimates of the survival probability showed significant decreases in survival at all stages when C. elegans was exposed to Se(IV). The growth probability of C. elegans in the L1 stage showed the most significant decline, from 0.11 h(-1) (for the control) to 0.04 h(-1) [for exposure to 3 mM Se(IV)]. These results showed that Se(IV) has a profound impact on C. elegans population dynamics. The asymptotic population growth rate (λ) was found to range from 1.00 to 0.64 h(-1) for increasing Se(IV) concentrations, implying a potential risk of population decrease for C. elegans exposure to a Se(IV)-contaminated environment. Our study shows how a mechanistic view based on the Se(IV) effects on the soil nematode C. elegans can promote a life cycle toxicity assessment. An important implication of this analysis is that mathematical models can be used to produce a population stage structure, to give clarity to the analysis of the key population-level endpoint (the asymptotic population growth rate) of population dynamics, and to evaluate the influences for the response of other species to environmental Se. These models sequentially provide candidate environmental criteria for the evaluation of the population impact of Se. PMID:24906985

  12. Caenorhabditis elegans as a platform to study the mechanism of action of synthetic antitumor lipids

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez-Blanco, Adolfo; Rodríguez-Matellán, Alberto G; Reis-Sobreiro, Mariana; Sáenz-Narciso, Beatriz; Cabello, Juan; Mohler, William A; Mollinedo, Faustino

    2014-01-01

    Drugs capable of specifically recognizing and killing cancer cells while sparing healthy cells are of great interest in anti-cancer therapy. An example of such a drug is edelfosine, the prototype molecule of a family of synthetic lipids collectively known as antitumor lipids (ATLs). A better understanding of the selectivity and the mechanism of action of these compounds would lead to better anticancer treatments. Using Caenorhabditis elegans, we modeled key features of the ATL selectivity against cancer cells. Edelfosine induced a selective and direct killing action on C. elegans embryos, which was dependent on cholesterol, without affecting adult worms and larvae. Distinct ATLs ranked differently in their embryonic lethal effect with edelfosine > perifosine > erucylphosphocholine >> miltefosine. Following a biased screening of 57 C. elegans mutants we found that inactivation of components of the insulin/IGF-1 signaling pathway led to resistance against the ATL edelfosine in both C. elegans and human tumor cells. This paper shows that C. elegans can be used as a rapid platform to facilitate ATL research and to further understand the mechanism of action of edelfosine and other synthetic ATLs. PMID:25485582

  13. A stochastic neuronal model predicts random search behaviors at multiple spatial scales in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, William M; Augustine, Steven B; Lawton, Kristy J; Lindsay, Theodore H; Thiele, Tod R; Izquierdo, Eduardo J; Faumont, Serge; Lindsay, Rebecca A; Britton, Matthew Cale; Pokala, Navin; Bargmann, Cornelia I; Lockery, Shawn R

    2016-01-01

    Random search is a behavioral strategy used by organisms from bacteria to humans to locate food that is randomly distributed and undetectable at a distance. We investigated this behavior in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, an organism with a small, well-described nervous system. Here we formulate a mathematical model of random search abstracted from the C. elegans connectome and fit to a large-scale kinematic analysis of C. elegans behavior at submicron resolution. The model predicts behavioral effects of neuronal ablations and genetic perturbations, as well as unexpected aspects of wild type behavior. The predictive success of the model indicates that random search in C. elegans can be understood in terms of a neuronal flip-flop circuit involving reciprocal inhibition between two populations of stochastic neurons. Our findings establish a unified theoretical framework for understanding C. elegans locomotion and a testable neuronal model of random search that can be applied to other organisms. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12572.001 PMID:26824391

  14. Identification of virulence properties in Salmonella Typhimurium DT104 using Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Sahu, Surasri N; Anriany, Yuda; Grim, Christopher J; Kim, Sungji; Chang, Zenas; Joseph, Sam W; Cinar, Hediye N

    2013-01-01

    Salmonella enterica serover Typhimurium definitive phage type DT104, resistant to multiple antibiotics, is one of the most widespread Salmonella species in human infection worldwide. Although several cohort studies indicate that DT104 carrying the multidrug resistance (MDR) locus on salmonella genomic island 1 is a possible hyper-virulent strain compared to DT104 strains without MDR, or other Salmonella enterica serotypes, existing experimental evidence regarding virulence properties associated with the MDR region is controversial. To address this question, we constructed an isogenic MDR deletion (?MDR) mutant strain of DT104, SNS12, by allelic exchange and used Caenorhabditis elegans as a host model to assess differences in virulence between these two strains. SNS12 exhibited decreased virulence in C. elegans, and we observed increased colonization and proliferation of the intestine of C. elegans by DT104. The immune response against MDR-carrying DT104 appears to function through a non-canonical Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) pathway, namely prion-like-(QN-rich)-domain-bearing protein pathway (PQN), in a ced-1 dependent manner in C. elegans. Further, we also demonstrate that genes of the PQN pathway and antimicrobial peptide gene abf-2, are expressed at higher transcriptional levels in worms immediately following exposure to DT104, in comparison with worms exposed to SNS12. Altogether, our results suggest that the MDR region of Salmonella Typhimurium DT104 has a direct role in virulence against Caenorhabditis elegans. PMID:24124587

  15. Identification of Virulence Properties in Salmonella Typhimurium DT104 Using Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sahu, Surasri N.; Anriany, Yuda; Grim, Christopher J.; Kim, Sungji; Chang, Zenas; Joseph, Sam W.; Cinar, Hediye N.

    2013-01-01

    Salmonella enterica serover Typhimurium definitive phage type DT104, resistant to multiple antibiotics, is one of the most widespread Salmonella species in human infection worldwide. Although several cohort studies indicate that DT104 carrying the multidrug resistance (MDR) locus on salmonella genomic island 1 is a possible hyper-virulent strain compared to DT104 strains without MDR, or other Salmonella enterica serotypes, existing experimental evidence regarding virulence properties associated with the MDR region is controversial. To address this question, we constructed an isogenic MDR deletion (∆MDR) mutant strain of DT104, SNS12, by allelic exchange and used Caenorhabditis elegans as a host model to assess differences in virulence between these two strains. SNS12 exhibited decreased virulence in C. elegans, and we observed increased colonization and proliferation of the intestine of C. elegans by DT104. The immune response against MDR-carrying DT104 appears to function through a non-canonical Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) pathway, namely prion-like-(QN-rich)-domain-bearing protein pathway (PQN), in a ced-1 dependent manner in C. elegans. Further, we also demonstrate that genes of the PQN pathway and antimicrobial peptide gene abf-2, are expressed at higher transcriptional levels in worms immediately following exposure to DT104, in comparison with worms exposed to SNS12. Altogether, our results suggest that the MDR region of Salmonella Typhimurium DT104 has a direct role in virulence against Caenorhabditis elegans. PMID:24124587

  16. DNA Strand Breaks in Mitotic Germ Cells of Caenorhabditis elegans Evaluated by Comet Assay.

    PubMed

    Park, Sojin; Choi, Seoyun; Ahn, Byungchan

    2016-03-31

    DNA damage responses are important for the maintenance of genome stability and the survival of organisms. Such responses are activated in the presence of DNA damage and lead to cell cycle arrest, apoptosis, and DNA repair. In Caenorhabditis elegans, double-strand breaks induced by DNA damaging agents have been detected indirectly by antibodies against DSB recognizing proteins. In this study we used a comet assay to detect DNA strand breaks and to measure the elimination of DNA strand breaks in mitotic germline nuclei of C. elegans. We found that C. elegans brc-1 mutants were more sensitive to ionizing radiation and camptothecin than the N2 wild-type strain and repaired DNA strand breaks less efficiently than N2. This study is the first demonstration of direct measurement of DNA strand breaks in mitotic germline nuclei of C. elegans. This newly developed assay can be applied to detect DNA strand breaks in different C. elegans mutants that are sensitive to DNA damaging agents. PMID:26903030

  17. A microfluidic device and automatic counting system for the study of C. elegans reproductive aging

    PubMed Central

    Li, Siran; Stone, Howard A.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is an excellent model to study reproductive aging because of its short life span, its cessation of reproduction in mid-adulthood, and the strong conservation of pathways that regulate longevity. During its lifetime, a wild-type C. elegans hermaphrodite usually lays about 200–300 self-fertilized hatchable eggs, which mainly occurs in the first three to five days of adulthood. Here, we report the development of a microfluidic assay and a real-time, automatic progeny counting system that records progeny counting information from many individual C. elegans hermaphrodites. This system offers many advantages compared to conventional plate assays. The flow of non-proliferating bacteria not only feeds the worms but also flushes the just-hatched young progeny through a filter that separates mothers from their offspring. The progeny that are flushed out of the chamber are detected and recorded using a novel algorithm. In our current design, one device contains as many as 16 individual chambers. Here we show examples of real-time progeny production information from wild-type (N2) and daf-2 (insulin receptor) mutants. We believe that this system has the potential to become a powerful, high time-resolution tool to study the detailed reproduction of C. elegans. PMID:25407755

  18. Natural polymorphisms in C. elegans HECW-1 E3 ligase affect pathogen avoidance behaviour.

    PubMed

    Chang, Howard C; Paek, Jennifer; Kim, Dennis H

    2011-12-22

    Heritable variation in behavioural traits generally has a complex genetic basis, and thus naturally occurring polymorphisms that influence behaviour have been defined only in rare instances. The isolation of wild strains of Caenorhabditis elegans has facilitated the study of natural genetic variation in this species and provided insights into its diverse microbial ecology. C. elegans responds to bacterial infection with conserved innate immune responses and, although lacking the immunological memory of vertebrate adaptive immunity, shows an aversive learning response to pathogenic bacteria. Here, we report the molecular characterization of naturally occurring coding polymorphisms in a C. elegans gene encoding a conserved HECT domain-containing E3 ubiquitin ligase, HECW-1. We show that two distinct polymorphisms in neighbouring residues of HECW-1 each affect C. elegans behavioural avoidance of a lawn of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Neuron-specific rescue and ablation experiments and genetic interaction analysis indicate that HECW-1 functions in a pair of sensory neurons to inhibit P. aeruginosa lawn avoidance behaviour through inhibition of the neuropeptide receptor NPR-1 (ref. 10), which we have previously shown promotes P. aeruginosa lawn avoidance behaviour. Our data establish a molecular basis for natural variation in a C. elegans behaviour that may undergo adaptive changes in response to microbial pathogens. PMID:22089131

  19. Caenorhabditis elegans NPR-1-mediated behaviors are suppressed in the presence of mucoid bacteria.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Kirthi C; Hunter, Ryan C; Bhatla, Nikhil; Newman, Dianne K; Kim, Dennis H

    2011-08-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans exhibits a diverse range of behaviors in response to bacteria. The presence of bacterial food influences C. elegans aerotaxis, aggregation, locomotion, and pathogen avoidance behaviors through the activity of the NPR-1 neuropeptide receptor. Here, we show that mucoid strains of bacteria that produce an exopolysaccharide matrix do not induce NPR-1-dependent behaviors. In the presence of mucoid strains of bacteria, the C. elegans laboratory wild-type (WT) strain N2 exhibits behaviors characteristic of wild isolates and mutants with reduced NPR-1 activity. Specifically, N2 exhibits lawn bordering and roaming behavior on mucoid nonpathogenic bacteria and loss of pathogen avoidance on mucoid Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Alginate biosynthesis by laboratory and clinical isolates of mucoid P. aeruginosa is necessary and sufficient to attenuate NPR-1-mediated behavior and it suppresses C. elegans pathogen avoidance behavior. Our data suggest that the specific interaction with nonmucoid bacteria induces NPR-1-dependent behaviors of C. elegans. These observations provide an example of how exopolysaccharide matrix biosynthesis by a community of bacteria may inhibit specific host responses to microbes. PMID:21768378

  20. abf-1 and abf-2, ASABF-type antimicrobial peptide genes in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed Central

    Kato, Yusuke; Aizawa, Tomoyasu; Hoshino, Hirokazu; Kawano, Keiichi; Nitta, Katsutoshi; Zhang, Hong

    2002-01-01

    Two genes encoding the ASABF (Ascaris suum antibacterial factor)-type antimicrobial peptide, abf-1 and abf-2, were identified in Caenorhabditis elegans. Recombinant ABF-2 exhibited potent microbicidal activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, and yeasts. The tissue-specific distribution estimated by immunofluorescence staining and transgenic analysis of a gfp fusion gene (where GFP corresponds to green fluorescent protein) suggested that ABF-2 contributes to surface defence in the pharynx. abf-1 contains a single intron at a conserved position, suggesting that asabf and abf originated from a common ancestor. Both transcripts for abf-1 and abf-2 were detected as two distinct forms, i.e. spliced leader (SL)1-trans-spliced with a long 5'-untranslated region (UTR) and SL-less with a short 5'-UTR. A polycistronic precursor RNA encoding ABF-1 and ABF-2 was detected, suggesting that these genes form an operon. An 'opportunistic operon' model for regulation of abf genes, including the generation of short SL-less transcripts, is proposed. In conclusion, C. elegans should have an immune defence system due to the antimicrobial peptides. C. elegans can be a novel model for innate immunity. Furthermore, the combination of biochemical identification in Ascaris suum and homologue hunting in C. elegans should be a powerful method of finding rapidly evolved proteins, such as some immune-related molecules in C. elegans. PMID:11772394