Worm Breeder's Gazette 2(2): 4
These abstracts should not be cited in bibliographies. Material contained herein should be treated as personal communication and should be cited as such only with the consent of the author.
C. elegans is currently being used as an experimental system to study ageing. Life span in C. elegans is very temperature dependent. There is a linear correlation between temperature and the inverse of the life span from 16 C to 25.5 C. Change in temperature during either the growth, reproductive, or post-reproductive portion of the life cycle will affect life span. The reproductive period is the most sensitive to temperature change. Life span can also be modified by diet. Increasing the food concentration shortens life span while decreasing the concentration increases life span. Change in food concentration can modify life span during all portions of the life cycle. Parental age and parental life span both have only small effects on progeny life span in C. elegans. Like other ageing systems studied, the nematode accumulates fluorescent pigment with age. The amount of fluorescent material increased both on a per weight and a per volume basis. Young larval worms are more sensitive to UV radiation than are adult and senescent worms. UV has less of a life-shortening effect on older worms. A temperature-sensitive spermatogenesis mutant has been used in a selection procedure to obtain life span mutants by EMS mutagenesis. Two mutants isolated thus far affect the food uptake and thereby impose a nutritional restriction leading to life span extension. A third mutant is a constitutive dauer former and thus extends its life span.