Mitochondria pp 485-501 | Cite as

Mitochondrial Division in Caenorhabditis elegans

  • Shilpa Gandre
  • Alexander M. van der Bliek
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology™ book series (MIMB, volume 372)


The study of mitochondrial division proteins has largely focused on yeast and mammalian cells. We describe methods to use Caenorhabditis elegans as an alternative model for studying mitochondrial division, taking advantage of the many wonderful resources provided by the C. elegans community. Our methods are largely based on manipulation of gene expression using classic and molecular genetic techniques combined with fluorescence microscopy. Some biochemical methods are also included. As antibodies become available, these biochemical methods are likely to become more sophisticated.

Key Words

C. elegans division Drp1 fusion nematode 


  1. 1.
    Rube, D. A. and van der Bliek, A. M. (2004) Mitochondrial morphology is dynamic and varied. Mol. Cell Biochem. 256–257, 331–339.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Labrousse, A. M., Zapaterra, M., Rube, D. A., and van der Bliek, A. M. (1999) C. elegans dynamin-related protein drp-1 controls severing of the mitochondrial outer membrane. Mol. Cell 4, 815–826.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Wood, W. B. (ed.) (1988) The Nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbor, NY.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Riddle, D. L., Blumenthal, T., Meyer, B. J., and Priess, J. R. (eds.) (1997) C. elegans II, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbor, NY.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Epstein, H. F., and Shakes, D. C. (eds.) (1995) Caenorhabditis elegans: Modern Biological Analysis of an Organism, Academic Press, San Diego, CA.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Hope, I. A. (ed.) (2000) C. elegans: A Practical Approach, Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Fraser, A. G., Kamath, R. S., Zipperlen, P., Martinez-Campos, M., Sohrmann, M., and Ahringer, J. (2000) Functional genomic analysis of C. elegans chromosome I by systematic RNA interference. Nature 408, 325–530.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Fire, A. and Waterston, R. H. (1989) Proper expression of myosin genes in transgenic nematodes. EMBO J. 8, 3419–3428.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Granato, M., Schnabel, H., and Schnabel, R. (1994) Pha-1, a selectable marker for gene transfer in C. elegans. Nucl. Acids Res. 22, 1762–1763.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Wightman, B., Ha, I., and Ruvkun, G. (1993) Posttranscriptional regulation of the heterochronic gene lin-14 by lin-4 mediates temporal pattern formation in C. elegans. Cell 75, 855–862.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Tavernarakis, N., Wang, S. L., Dorovkov, M., Ryazanov, A., and Driscoll, M. (2000) Heritable and inducible genetic interference by double-stranded RNA encoded by transgenes. Nat. Genet. 24, 180–183.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Winston, W. M., Molodowitch, C., and Hunter, C. P. (2002) Systemic RNAi in C. elegans requires the putative transmembrane protein SID-1. Science 295, 2456–2459.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Tabara, H., Grishok, A., and Mello, C. C. (1998) RNAi in C. elegans: soaking in the genome sequence. Science 282, 430–431.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Timmons, L., Court, D. L., and Fire, A. (2001) Ingestion of bacterially expressed dsRNAs can produce specific and potent genetic interference in Caenorhabditis elegans. Gene 263, 103–112.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Hermann, G. J., Schroeder, L. K., Hieb, C. A., et al. (2005) Genetic analysis oflysosomal trafficking in Caenorhabditis elegans. Mol. Biol. Cell 16, 3273–3288.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Jonassen, T., Marbois, B. N., Faull, K. F., Clarke, C. F., and Larsen, P. L. (2002) Development and fertility in Caenorhabditis elegans clk-1 mutants depend upon transport of dietary coenzyme Q8 to mitochondria. J. Biol. Chem. 277, 45,020–45,027.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Kelly, W. G., Xu, S., Montgomery, M. K., and Fire, A. (1997) Distinct requirements for somatic and germline expression of a generally expressed Caenorhabditis elegans gene. Genetics 146, 227–238.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Tabara, H., Sarkissian, M., Kelly, W. G., et al. (1999) The rde-1 gene, RNA interference, and transposon silencing in C. elegans. Cell 99, 123–132.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Simmer, F., Tijsterman, M., Parrish, S., et al. (2002) Loss of the putative RNA-directed RNA polymerase RRF-3 makes C. elegans hypersensitive to RNAi. Curr. Biol. 12, 1317–1319.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc., Totowa, NJ 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shilpa Gandre
    • 1
  • Alexander M. van der Bliek
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological ChemistryDavid Geffen School of Medicine at UCLALos Angeles

Personalised recommendations