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Eisenia hortensis Detects Chemesthetic Irritants through TRP Channels

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abstract
Earthworms have large impacts on the environment they inhabit. Through their movement, they assist in aerating the soil as well as increasing soil permeability to water which can increase plant growth. Despite their importance to agriculture, little is known about earthworm chemesthesis i.e., the detection of chemical irritants. Based on a ecotoxicology soil sampling method which expels earthworms with allyl isothiocyanate, a common Transient Receptor Potential 1 (TRPA1) channel agonist, we hypothesized that earthworms possess TRPA1-like channels. We examined whether the earthworm Eisenia hortensis possesses TRPA1-like channels, as well as other TRP channel members. We assessed whether E. hortensis could detect canonical TRP channel agonists and other potential aversive compounds using DASPEI imaging. DASPEI is a styryl dye that stains active cells. DASPEI-loaded epithelial cells fluoresced in the presence of the TRP channel agonists cinnamaldehyde and menthol but not capsaicin. To our knowledge, this the first time that DASPEI has been used to image live cells in response to specific sensory stimuli. From our results, we conclude that E. hortensis possess TRPA1-like and TRPM8-like channels while lacking functional TRPV1 channels.
subject
Chemesthesis
DASPEI Imaging
Earthworm
Eisenia hortensis
TRP Channel
contributor
Kim, Eui (author)
Silver, Wayne L (committee chair)
Marrs, Glen S (committee member)
date
2019-05-24T08:35:32Z (accessioned)
2019-05-24T08:35:32Z (available)
2019 (issued)
degree
Biology (discipline)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/93915 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
Eisenia hortensis Detects Chemesthetic Irritants through TRP Channels
type
Thesis

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