The roundworm C. elegans is a mainstay of aging research due to its short lifespan and easily manipulable genetics. Current, widely used methods for long-term measurement of C. elegans are limited by low throughput and the difficulty of performing longitudinal monitoring of aging phenotypes. Here we describe the WorMotel, a microfabricated device for long-term cultivation and automated longitudinal imaging of large numbers of C. elegans confined to individual wells. Using the WorMotel, we find that short-lived and long-lived strains exhibit patterns of behavioral decline that do not temporally scale between individuals or populations, but rather resemble the shortest and longest lived individuals in a wild type population. We also find that behavioral trajectories of worms subject to oxidative stress resemble trajectories observed during aging. Our method is a powerful and scalable tool for analysis of C. elegans behavior and aging.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Todd Lamitina and Vivek Sharma for helpful discussions and technical assistance. Some strains were provided by the CGC, which is funded by NIH Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (P40 OD010440). CCY was supported by a University Scholars Award. CFY was supported by the Alfred P Sloan Foundation, Ellison Medical Foundation, European Commission, and the National Institutes of Health.
© Churgin et al.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)