Awesome news- today, we’ve completed the whole of microbiology. Thank you for sticking with me :D, especially after the delay last week. I’ve got an amazing physics post coming up, so… YAY!
Let’s do this!
What are nematodes?
I think you’ve already guessed what they are by the above picture. But if you haven’t, then they’re worms… To be more specific, nematodes are actually roundworms. They’re a thriving population- with 15,000+ discovered species. Yikes- 15,000+ species of just one type worm. Sorry, but they aren’t my favorite creature…😅 Which creatures give you shudders? Drop a comment below!
Characteristics of Nematodes->
You know, not all worms are round. What sets nematodes apart is that they’re all round. If you took a cross-section of a nematode, then the resulting image would be circular. Not to mention, nematodes also have two separate genders, and they reproduce sexually. Can’t imagine worms doing the do. Actually, I don’t even want to…😬 Nematodes can also be microscopic- but they can grow to be nearly a meter long!
Types of Nematodes->
Well, despite there being 15,000+ nematodes species, they’re broadly divided into only two classes. The first class is Adenophorea- we’ll refer to it as Aphor for our purposes. And the second class is Secernentea- which we’ll refer to as Stea.
Aphor [Adenophorea] ->
Now, the basis upon which nematodes are divided into these two classes is whether they have phasmids or not. A phasmid is a sensory receptor, and in Aphor worms, they’re generally never present. Also, please do no confuse the sensory receptor phasmid with the insect phasmid- that just brings things to a whole new level of weird… Aphor worms are normally present in marine, freshwater and terrestrial habitats.
Stea [Secernentea] ->
These worms nearly always possess phasmids. That’s what sets them apartt from Aphor worms. Also, Stea worms live in different places compared to Aphor worms- they only live in terrestrial areas, and are rarely found in aquatic environments. On the other hand, Aphor worms are found in terrestrial, marine and freshwater habitats.
The Model Organism- C. elegans ->
One type of nematode- the C. elegans– has been particularly helpful in the lab. They are one of the easiest animals to handle, so they aren’t too much of a hassle. It’s incredibly small- only a millimeter long, and it’s transparent, so they’re convenient to use for research purposes. The C. elegans hermaphrodite[a hermaphrodite is a creature that has both male and female reproductive organs] has precisely 302 neurons- which is why it has been used to do research on neural development in animals.
That’s it for today, guys!
Thanks for reading, and bye!