Tag Archives: c. elegans

For biologists studying tiny worms, new technologies make big improvements

For biologists studying tiny worms, new technologies make big improvements Two new technologies are helping scientists understand new aspects of organ and nervous system development in C. elegans. One allows them to image worms developing in a natural environment, while the other makes it possible to track single neurons as the worms grow. More »

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Scientists prove how genetics change behavior by studying worms’ foraging strategies

Scientists prove how genetics change behavior by studying worms’ foraging strategiesLike all animals, C. elegans worms pay attention to their peers and can adjust their behavior in response to competition. Neuroscientists have discovered a genetic component of this social phenomenon, providing concrete biological evidence for game theory. More »

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A common brain cell shapes the nervous system in unexpected ways

A common brain cell shapes the nervous system in unexpected waysGlial cells nourish, protect, and support neurons, but their role is far from passive. A new study shows how they can change the shape of nerve endings and distinguish between the different types of neurons they encase. More »

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A newly discovered way for cells to die

A newly discovered way for cells to dieIn studying how worms develop from larvae into adults, scientists have discovered a previously unknown process in which cells are programmed to die. The findings might have implications for understanding some diseases, including neurodegenerative disorders. More »

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Scientists learn how young brains form lifelong memories by studying worms’ food choices

Scientists learn how young brains form lifelong memories by studying worms’ food choicesNeuroscientists have found that when young C. elegans worms taste poisonous food, they remember that experience for the rest of their life. Their work is teasing apart the biological mechanisms that drive different types of learning. More »

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For worms, positive thinking is the key to finding food

For worms, positive thinking is the key to finding foodA newly described neural circuit in the brain of C. elegans derives precise and simple information from the smell of food, nudging the animal in the direction of the food source. This discovery shows the worm brain may be more sophisticated in processing sensory information than previously realized. More »

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For dying cells, timing is everything

Conventional wisdom suggests that cells are at all times balanced precariously between life and death, with proteins that could kill the cell poised to strike at a moment’s notice. While this is certainly true in some cases, new research from Rockefeller University shows that it is not universal, and that several layers of regulation control cell death. More »

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MicroRNAs linked to mammalian skin development

Since their discovery, microRNAs have been shown to play a role in the development of many organisms, but not mammals. This week, Rockefeller scientists announce that they have found and characterized over one hundred microRNAs in the outer layer and hair follicles of mouse skin. These microRNAs, tiny chunks of RNA that bind to longer segments in order to turn off the production of proteins, are key to the mice’s ability to develop hair follicles and oil glands, the scientists say. More »

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Worming our way into the brain

Rockefeller scientists find that studying glial cells in the roundworm C. elegans may provide insight into a variety of human brain diseases. More »

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