Nematode Article

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I read a very interesting article about nematodes, which I wanted to read since we are working with nematodes in lab.

The popular science article is located here:
http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-02/two-very-different-worms-share-same-neurons

The full primary research report, found in the journal, Cell, can be found here:
http://ac.els-cdn.com/S0092867412015000/1-s2.0-S0092867412015000-main.pdf?_tid=5deb5844-ae87-11e2-9e8a-00000aacb360&acdnat=1366990899_1a794adfb1b7c28666ffffc22bea4641

Apparently, there are two species of worms, Caenorhabditis elegans and Pristionchus pacificus, that have the exact same twenty neurons that control the activity of the foregut. Apparently, it seems that the same set of genes causes the same neurons to develop--they share the same cells--but the way they are connected is drastically different, so much so that they can digest different types of organisms for food. While Caenorhabditis elegans can digest bacteria, Pristionchus pacificus, evidently, is able to eat other worms.

The synapses were found to be wired quite differently, and it seems that there is a difference is the way information moves through the neural system. In Pristionchus pacificus, neral signals pass through more cells before reaching the muscles of the foregut, which indicates that more complex motor functions are being performed; this could attribute to the ability of the worm to actually consume and digest another worm.

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This page contains a single entry by Tavis Grorud published on April 29, 2013 12:52 PM.

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