Over the past few months, I have made progress in the lab and gained positive results. To evaluate the functions of specific genes required for male fertilization, I looked for articles in the literature. I came across an assay that is used by many scientists to determine the rate of fertility in the model organism C. elegans. I used the Brood Sizing Assay to determine the rate of three different strains at 25 degrees Celsius. This experiment requires me to monitor the rate of fertility of the C. elegans daily and to accurately count the number of progenies produced.
During this process, I came across multiple problems. The first problem that occurred was that one of the strains became contaminated. To resolve this issue, I kept transferring the worms to new plates until the contamination reduced. I then began the assay, and this required me to use 90 plates per week. To do this, I had to manage my time well and make plates quickly and efficiently. The first batch of plates I made was not the best since the bacteria overgrew. I made the plates again, and they came out perfect. I will be using the new plates this week to re-do the assay at 20 Degrees Celsius. So far, I have seen that at 25 degrees Celsius, the mutants had reduced fertility compared to the control group meaning these mutations result in fertility defects.