Munich Researchers Use WormLab to Study Blast Effects on C. elegans


Explosions can tear apart buildings, send shrapnel flying, and hurtle humans into the air. But explosions also cause damage in ways that aren’t as visually apparent. Scientists say the force of a blast can cause brain damage, but questions linger about how the symptoms that emerge after a blast-induced traumatic brain injury are connected to the initial trauma.

In their quest to learn more about how symptoms emerge after a traumatic blast, researchers at the Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich, in Munich, Germany have developed an animal model of blast-related mild traumatic brain injury (br-mTBI) using C. elegans – a popular model organism alternative to vertebrate animals.

In their study, published in Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, the research team used WormLab to analyze thousands of worms. They found that shockwaves either slowed the worms’ movements or rendered them paralyzed. Symptoms played out in a dose-dependent manner, meaning that worms exposed to a higher number of shockwaves displayed a higher severity of symptoms.

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Researchers cited MBF systems in 29 papers during the week of 6/29/2015

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Allen, K. M., Fung, S. J., & Shannon Weickert, C. (2015). Cell proliferation is reduced in the hippocampus in schizophrenia. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry. doi: 10.1177/0004867415589793

Benarroch, E. E., Schmeichel, A. M., Parisi, J. E., & Low, P. A. (2015). Histaminergic tuberomammillary neuron loss in multiple system atrophy and dementia with Lewy bodies. Movement Disorders, n/a-n/a. doi: 10.1002/mds.26287.

Cowen, S., McLaughlin, S. L., Hobbs, G., Coad, J., Martin, K. H., Olfert, I. M., & Vona-Davis, L. (2015). High-Fat, High-Calorie Diet Enhances Mammary Carcinogenesis and Local Inflammation in MMTV-PyMT Mouse Model of Breast Cancer. Cancers, 7(3), 1125-1142.

Gorris, R., Fischer, J., Erwes, K. L., Kesavan, J., Peterson, D. A., Alexander, M., . . . Brüstle, O. (2015). Pluripotent stem cell-derived radial glia-like cells as stable intermediate for efficient generation of human oligodendrocytes. Glia, n/a-n/a. doi: 10.1002/glia.22882.

Kiyota, T., Morrison, C. M., Tu, G., Dyavarshetty, B., Weir, R. A., Zhang, G., . . . Gendelman, H. E. (2015). Presenilin-1 familial Alzheimer’s disease mutation alters hippocampal neurogenesis and memory function in CCL2 null mice. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity(0). doi:

Lazzara, C. A., Riley, R. R., Rane, A., Andersen, J. K., & Kim, Y.-H. (2015). The combination of lithium and l-Dopa/Carbidopa reduces MPTP-induced abnormal involuntary movements (AIMs) via calpain-1 inhibition in a mouse model: Relevance for Parkinson׳s disease therapy. Brain Research, 1622(0), 127-136. doi:

Lv, E., Deng, J., Yu, Y., Wang, Y., Gong, X., Jia, J., & Wang, X. (2015). Nrf2-ARE signals mediated the anti-oxidative action of electro-acupuncture in an MPTP mouse model of Parkinson’s disease. Free Radical Research, 0(ja), 1-30. doi: doi:10.3109/10715762.2015.1067696.

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Mutations in a TRP ion channel cause dopaminergic cell loss in C. elegans


Tracking C. elegans with WormLab

Researchers have identified two strains of mutant C. elegans that lose the majority of their dopaminergic neurons in adulthood, a characteristic of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.

The two strains of mutant C. elegans (ot337 and ot477) showed normal development of dopaminergic neurons, however these neurons began to progressively decline in adulthood; and the deterioration was not an occurrence of the normal aging process, the authors say in their paper published in the Journal of Neuroscience.

After mapping the worms’ entire genome sequence, the researchers pinpointed the site of the mutation – the Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) mechanosensory channel trp-4 – a mutation that has not previously been implicated in dopaminergic neuron death.

“We describe here a novel Caenorhabditis elegans mutant with robust and progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons during postembryonic development,” the authors say in their paper. “We show that a single amino acid substitution in a TRP channel is responsible for the phenotype, implicating mutations in TRP family channels as a direct cause of dopaminergic degeneration for the first time.”

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Researchers cited MBF systems in papers 18 during the week of 4/28/2014

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Aungst, S. L., Kabadi, S. V., Thompson, S. M., Stoica, B. A., & Faden, A. I. (2014). Repeated mild traumatic brain injury causes chronic neuroinflammation, changes in hippocampal synaptic plasticity, and associated cognitive deficits. Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism.

Bissonnette, S., Muratot, S., Vernoux, N., Bezeau, F., Calon, F., Hébert, S. S., & Samadi, P. (2014). The effect of striatal pre-enkephalin overexpression in the basal ganglia of the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine mouse model of Parkinson’s disease. European Journal of Neuroscience, n/a-n/a. doi: 10.1111/ejn.12596.

Büchele, F., Döbrössy, M., Hackl, C., Jiang, W., Papazoglou, A., & Nikkhah, G. (2014). Two-step grafting significantly enhances the survival of foetal dopaminergic transplants and induces graft-derived vascularisation in a 6-OHDA model of Parkinson’s disease. Neurobiology of Disease(0).

Erin M. Gibson, David Purger, Christopher W. Mount, Andrea K. Goldstein, Grant L. Lin, Lauren S. Wood, Ingrid Inema, Sarah E. Miller, Gregor Bieri, J. Bradley Zuchero, Ben A. Barres, Pamelyn J. Woo, Hannes Vogel, and Michelle Monje.(2014).Neuronal Activity Promotes Oligodendrogenesis and Adaptive Myelination in the Mammalian Brain. Science.

Jacob, T. G., Raghav, R., Kumar, A., Garg, P. K., & Roy, T. S. (2014). Duration of injury correlates with necrosis in caerulein-induced experimental acute pancreatitis: implications for pathophysiology. International Journal of Experimental Pathology, n/a-n/a. doi: 10.1111/iep.12081.

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Researchers cited MBF systems in 18 papers during the week of 3/31/14

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Bekar, E., Altunkaynak, B., Balcı, K., Aslan, G., Ayyıldız, M., & Kaplan, S. (2014). Effects of high fat diet induced obesity on peripheral nerve regeneration and levels of GAP 43 and TGF-β in rats. Biotechnic and Histochemistry, 0(0), 1-11. doi: doi:10.3109/10520295.2014.894575.

Dautan, D., Huerta-Ocampo, I., Witten, I. B., Deisseroth, K., Bolam, J. P., Gerdjikov, T., & Mena-Segovia, J. (2014). A Major External Source of Cholinergic Innervation of the Striatum and Nucleus Accumbens Originates in the Brainstem. The Journal of Neuroscience, 34(13), 4509-4518.

He, F., Zou, J.-T., Zhou, Q.-F., Niu, D.-L., & Jia, W.-H. (2014). Glatiramer acetate reverses cognitive deficits from cranial- irradiated rat by inducing hippocampal neurogenesis. Journal of Neuroimmunology(0).

Jiang, J.-y., Jia, F., yin, y., Gao, G., Wang, Y., & cen, l. (2014). MMP-9 Inhibitor SB-3CT Attenuates Behavioral Impairments and Hippocampal Loss after Traumatic Brain Injury in Rat. Journal of Neurotrauma(ja).

Klein, C., Hain, E. G., Braun, J., Riek, K., Mueller, S., Steiner, B., & Sack, I. (2014). Enhanced Adult Neurogenesis Increases Brain Stiffness: In Vivo Magnetic Resonance Elastography in a Mouse Model of Dopamine Depletion. Plos one, 9(3), e92582.

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Researchers use WormLab to reveal that nicotine addiction is heritable in C. elegans

Interacting Worms

Smokers aren’t only hurting themselves, they’re also hurting their children and grandchildren. So says a study published last month in the EXCLI Journal.

Scientists at East Carolina University, in Greenville, North Carolina saw unusual behavior in C. elegans roundworms exposed to nicotine at an early stage of development. But that’s not all – the researchers also witnessed abnormal behavior and withdrawal symptoms in subsequent generations of worms even though these groups were not directly exposed to nicotine. Continue reading “Researchers use WormLab to reveal that nicotine addiction is heritable in C. elegans” »

Our systems were cited in 18 published research papers last week. (week of 09/23/13)

Take a closer look at some of the research…


Stereo Investigator:

Bernstein, H. S., Samad, T., Cholsiripunlert, S., Khalifian, S., Gong, W., Ritner, C., . . . Bennett, S. (2013). Stem Cell Antigen-1 in Skeletal Muscle Function. PLoS currents, 5.

Klemenhagen, K. C., O’Brien, S. P., & Brody, D. L. (2013). Repetitive Concussive Traumatic Brain Injury Interacts with Post-Injury Foot Shock Stress to Worsen Social and Depression-Like Behavior in Mice. Plos one, 8(9), e74510. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0074510.

Phillips, R. J., Hudson, C. N., & Powley, T. L. (2013). Sympathetic axonopathies and hyperinnervation in the small intestine smooth muscle of aged Fischer 344 rats. Autonomic Neuroscience(0). doi:

Wang, Y.-R., Qin, S., Han, R., Wu, J.-C., Liang, Z.-Q., Qin, Z.-H., & Wang, Y. (2013). Cathepsin L Plays a Role in Quinolinic Acid-Induced NF-Κb Activation and Excitotoxicity in Rat Striatal Neurons. Plos one, 8(9), e75702. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0075702.


Asante, C. O., & Martin, J. H. (2013). Differential Joint-Specific Corticospinal Tract Projections within the Cervical Enlargement. PLoS ONE, 8(9), e74454. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0074454.

Continue reading “Our systems were cited in 18 published research papers last week. (week of 09/23/13)” »

Discover new worm tracking tools at the International C. elegans Meeting

19th C. elegansMBF Bioscience will be at the 19th International C. elegans meeting from Thrusday, June 27 to Saturday, June 29, at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Visit booth #110 to talk to our worm tracking experts and to try out the latest tools for worm tracking. We will have the latest version of WormLab to easily track the behavior of your worms and our new plate illuminator and camera stand to capture high-contrast videos of your worms for analysis.

Staff Scientist Julie Korich, Ph.D. and Jeff Sprenger, Vice President of R&D, will be at booth #110 to show you how to easily and accurately analyze the locomotory behavior of C. elegans with WormLab.

To learn how WormLab tracks and analyzes worms, or to download a free trial, please visit our website.

Unveiling WormLab 2.0, the Latest Version of our Groundbreaking Worm Tracking Software

We are delighted to introduce WormLab 2.0.  Our latest version of WormLab features an intuitive step-by-step workflow to analyze the locomotion and behavior of C. elegans and is now available to Mac and Windows 8 users. We’ve worked hard to improve our tracking algorithms, particularly our self-overlap and entanglement algorithms.  We’ve added whole plate mode for tracking many worms on a plate and added extensive camera support for over 1,400 different camera models.  Tracking is much faster throughout and the 64-bit version is even faster than the 32-bit version.

“Researchers are often overwhelmed by the painstaking frame by frame data collection process, often performed over hundreds of frames, which can be a tedious process.  With WormLab, video capture and tracking only take minutes so that researchers can focus on the meaningful part – analysis and interpretation.  Furthermore, the collected data is easily exported for more custom analysis to other software like Excel or Matlab,” says Jeff Sprenger, VP of Research.

Learn more about WormLab from our website and try WormLab 2.0 for free  for 30 days with full technical support.


Watch our WormLab Webinar Video

Our latest webinar “Introduction to WormLab” is now available for streaming. Go to our website to watch Dr. Susan Hendricks and Vice President Jeff Sprenger demonstrate WormLab, our new software for tracking and analyzing the behavior of C. elegans.

Find out more about how WormLab can help with your research by visiting our WormLab page at  Contact us for a free trial or for a quote!

To find out about upcoming webinars, like MBF Bioscience on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.