Document Type


Date of Award



College of Science, Engineering, and Technology (COSET)

Degree Name

MS in Biology

First Advisor

Fawzia H. Abdel-Rahman


Exemplar organisms seemed very useful in understanding the biological effects of the space environment. They can be employed as a model system to address essential questions in biology. One of the advantages of the model system is that many complex approaches can be applied to address questions of interest. This humble C. elegans roundworm has many benefits for organic studies in space; it is tiny, requiring little space; it is a self-fertilizing hermaphrodite that can exist and reproduce in a designated liquid or agar media. C. elegans in liquid cultures seeded with Escherichia coli OP50 were exposed to simulated microgravity using the NASA recommended High Aspect Ratio Vessel (HARV) for varying intervals 3, 4, 5, and 6 days, and 8, 9, 10, and 12 days. Several containers each containing 10 ml of C. elegans liquid cultures were preserved on a shaker to serve as control. All preparations were maintained at 210c. The initial populations of C. elegans were determined prior to the exposure of the worms to modeled microgravity (HARV), as well as those in the control. 1 2 The final population for each treatment (HARV exposed worms and control) were determined, and all life stages were counted carefully, and each treatment was completed. The generation time, brood size, lifespan, and assessment of locomotion were determined. The exposed and control C. elegans adults were stained with 4', 6-diamino-2- phenylindole dihydrochloride (DAPI) and the fluorescent microscope was used to determine the effect of modeled microgravity on the germ cells count in the ovaries of adult worms