Since my first blog post, I have learned a lot of techniques commonly used in a genetics research laboratory. I have made plates on which the worms will grow, spotted them with bacteria for RNAi, and cultivated different mutant strains of worms and observed various phenotypes. To set up this experiment, the first thing I did was grow my bacterial cultures, which contained siRNA, that would be used to silence a targeted gene. The bacteria were then incubated for 16 hours. After 16 hours a 100 microliter spot of each bacterium was placed on a RNAi plate and incubated at room temperature for 24 hours.
The next morning I set up my experiment, placing 5 L4 N2 C.elegans hermaphrodites on each plate and incubating them at 22 degrees Celsius overnight. A week later I observe the phenotypes produced and repeat the experiment. Along with collecting the data from these experiments, I have also been learning how to perform statistical analysis using a program called R.