Talk:Caenorhabditis elegans

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Good article Caenorhabditis elegans has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
December 28, 2012 Good article nominee Not listed
July 11, 2014 Good article nominee Listed
Current status: Good article
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Inserting and removing content[edit]

From Ericross

Apologies for insert-remove-insert-remove 'ping pong'.

Material inserted then removed was from a site where copyright was not immediately obvious to me, but became apparent after checking further.

Request to author for inclusion will be submitted.


Made some minor corrections. There are still a few things in the article that are not exactly true but not exactly false. When I become a little more familiar with wikipedia (sorry, I'm a newbie), I may do a little more work on this.

--Leon avery 17:51, 25 November 2005 (UTC)


Could someone provide some etymology about the scientific name ? It's important to give the meaning of Caenorhabditis elegans, if it is a physical and behavioural description about the animal, or if it was named after some scientist. I've seen much less important animals with the complete meaning of their scientific name. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:33, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

The German version says,

"Neuer-Stab zierlich[1]"

with [1] Fritz Cl. Werner:Wortelemente lateinisch-griechischer Fachausdrücke in den biologischen Wissenschaften Suhrkamp, 1. Auflage 1972. (talk) 22:40, 1 April 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, forgot to translate ;)

New - Stick (rod/bar) - elegant (talk) 22:41, 1 April 2010 (UTC)

They changed their minds on the German version =) ow it is "living in mud" =) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:39, 28 September 2010 (UTC)


C. elegans is important! This article should be 50 pages long. I request the efforts of biology students and researchers and teachers to expand this page!!

I'm working on it! :-) I've made the first attempt to split up the page into distinct sections. Other plans below... Nod

What this page needs[edit]

Some ideas:

  1. Expand biology section and as it grows create new subsections as appropriate (e.g. nervous system, cellular differentiation, mating system etc.). Ultimately, these could each be separate wikipedia pages
  2. Add information about use of RNAi in worms somewhere (model organism section)
  3. Rather than people add their own lab to the online resources section, there should maybe be a new page for C. elegans laboratories (I removed one lab link earlier). With so many C. elegans labs it will get unwieldly to include them all here
  4. try to avoid mentioning individual genes on this page. Again the page will get too crowded if people just add one sentence about their favourite gene. Important genes probably merit separate wikipedia pages which could all be linked from a C. elegans genes page (which in turn would be linked to the C. elegans page)
  5. References section should also be moved to a separate page if it gets too big, though I think that this should maybe only contain details of key papers
  6. I've requested (from the WormAtlas project) a high quality image of the worm to to at the top of the image which doesn't have any staining.

Nod 15:45, 5 September 2006 (UTC)

Over the falls in a barrel[edit]

It would be interesting if this could be included, though I don't know how to include it without hurting the professional tone of the article. C. Elegans may hold the record for worst calamity survived by a complex organism.

Though, I think the record for an unprotected organism (the C. Elegans were in a petri dish in an aluminum canister) is the water bear. It's amazing what those things can survive.Tragic romance 09:29, 8 December 2006 (UTC)

WormAtlas/C. elegans II copyright[edit]

I'm far from sure if we are allowed to use their text and images without asking them for it/them each time.. However, WormAtlas states:

"Images or text created by Wormatlas may be used by individuals or organizations for non-profit educational and scientific purposes with proper acknowledgement of Wormatlas ( Submitted material that appear in Wormatlas require permission from the original submitter and/or publisher prior to usage or republication."

The National Center for Biotechnology Information (link) says their info is in the public domain, but I couldn't find anything on the C. elegans II (link) site. I'm not sure if we can use their pictures too.

I'm thinking of greatly expanding the section about the nervous system (well, actually more than just the nervous system but just to begin somewhere ;)), so it would be great if I/we could incorporate their data and pictures. Marcus 13:04, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

I contacted Zeynep Altun at WormAtlas who gave me permission for use of the image at the top of the page. I think they would be happy to let more images be used if you sought permission. Nod 19:46, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Nematode evolution[edit]

I added this section primarily to move the paragraph on sponge-human-worm evolution out of the genome section as it didn't really seem to belong there. I also heavily pruned and edited the aforementioned paragraph as I don't think it added much interesting information to this page. I don't think a general page on a species should get too bogged down in mentioning individual genes unless they are famously associated with that organism or play a very special role. Hopefully, others can now start adding something more substantial to this section. Estimates of divergence dates from other major organisms might be of interest. Nod 19:53, 21 January 2007 (UTC)


The 'laboratory uses' section now states that 'The organism has also been identified as a model for nicotine dependence as it has been found to experience the same symptoms humans experience when they quit smoking. [4]'

Such as what? Nail biting, coughing and starting fights with strangers?

The (4) article mentions 'including acute response, tolerance, withdrawal, and sensitization'. Put that in, or remove the line as a whole? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Brrrtje (talkcontribs) 14:06, 3 October 2007 (UTC)

I'm shocked that this problem has not been fixed after over two years. I've changed that sentence to reflect the source of the information in question. Gary (talk) 03:16, 4 January 2010 (UTC)


I would like to expand on some topics, if I have time:

  • Strains - describe the origins of N2 and talk about the different types of strain available - natural strains and lab-indiced strains. Talk a bit about how N2 is not necessarily the same between different labs as each lab has maintaned a clone of N2 for many years now and RNASeq sequencing shows divergence between them. Description of the CGC resource and how it distributes strains.
  • Resources - both for data and biological samples: WormBase, 959 Nematodes, Worm Atlas, Leon Avery's page, CGC, any others? Worm Journal, Worm Breeders Gazette.
  • How genes are curated.
  • Nomenclature of genes, CDS, transcripts, CGC names, clones,
  • (Update : I've put in a description of the gene/CDS/transcript nomenclature in the WormBase article)

Gary Williams 16 Aug 2011 —Preceding undated comment added 17:34, 13 August 2011 (UTC).

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Caenorhabditis elegans/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Cwmhiraeth (talk · contribs) 19:06, 2 December 2012 (UTC)

I will take on the review of this article. Here are a few initial comments giving you some things to do before I review the article more fully. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 19:06, 2 December 2012 (UTC)
  • The lead section does not conform with the Manual of style
  • Several paragraphs are insufficiently referenced. See here for information on inline citations.
  • There is a "citation needed" tag in one place.
  • There are too many sections after the References section

Outside comment: Apologies for dropping in, but I wanted to suggest another important thing to think about. First, be wary of indiscriminately adding material just because someone used C. elegans as a model organism in their experiment. The sentence about IGF-like factors increasing lifespan, for instance, doesn't really tell us about C. elegans as an organism; C. elegans is just the tool that was used. Describing Brenner's role in studying and promoting C. elegans as a model organism and a brief description of the really seminal experiments in the field is fine, of course. Similar considerations apply for experimental design. Wikipedia isn't a how-to; the detailed description of freezing response is a bit much. What you'd want, again, is a very general overview of what sort of protocols you can carry out on worms (RNAi, microscopic observation, freezing, etc.) without the detail to actually carry them out. Choess (talk) 01:23, 3 December 2012 (UTC)

Another outside comment Sorry for jumping in as well, but I want to expand on the above point by Choess. The scientific importance of this organism is immense, but the information is spread over three separate section and much of it is repeated. I think a concise section detailing the more important studies and uses in research would be better. This article should really concentrate on the biology of C. elegans. I would say there is scope for a Scientific uses of ''Caenorhabditis elegans'' article to be split out if you are worried about losing information. AIRcorn (talk) 22:41, 5 December 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for all of your comments! I will try making all the modifications to the article, though it will take a while. It's the beginning of finals weeks at my university and I am working on multiple wiki projects while juggling school work. I'll try periodic updates. GenesBrainsBehaviorNeuroscienceKL (talk) 10:33, 6 December 2012 (UTC)

Further comments[edit]

Most of the concerns mentioned above have not been addressed, though I see that the "citation needed" tag has gone. I can see that GenesBrainsBehaviorNeuroscienceKL is busy in real life. This is a difficult article to raise to GA standard because of the use made of this nematode as a model organism and the issues raised by Aircorn and Choess. A lot of the information is quite technical in nature and needs good citations to back it up. I am putting the nomination on hold for one week to allow time for improvements. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 09:57, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

GA fail[edit]

I am now failing this article as it does not meet the GA criteria. No attempt has been made since the 6th December to improve it along the lines outlined above. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 14:43, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

File:C elegans male.svg to appear as POTD soon[edit]

Hello! This is a note to let the editors of this article know that File:C elegans male.svg will be appearing as picture of the day on October 13, 2013. You can view and edit the POTD blurb at Template:POTD/2013-10-13. If this article needs any attention or maintenance, it would be preferable if that could be done before its appearance on the Main Page. Thanks! — Crisco 1492 (talk) 22:56, 26 September 2013 (UTC)

Picture of the day
Caenorhabditis elegans male diagram

Caenorhabditis elegans (full size) is a free-living, transparent nematode (roundworm) which measures about 1 millimetre (0.039 in) in length. Males, such as the one pictured here, comprise a small minority of the species—just 0.05 percent—and can be differentiated from hermaphrodites by the adult male's smaller size, single rather than double-armed gonad, vas deferens, and fan-like tail specialized for mating.

Diagram: K.D. Schroeder
ArchiveMore featured pictures...

Refs, links, etc...[edit]

I've just done a major cleanup of the references, because I had nothing to do. However, I can't decide on content, since I don't know diddly squad about nematodes or C. elegans in particular. I will say that for this article to get to GA or FA status, a good look needs to be take at the External links section, and some other things need to be addressed.

  • A lot of this material should be properly formatted and included in the Further reading section (e.g. the nobel lectures).
  • The EL section should be trimmed to high-relevance links and given some kind of structure that makes it easy to decide where you want to go from here.
  • Several paragraphs are very short. It feels more like a list of random facts than a structured presentation the main aspects of C. elegans.
  • Some sections, like the Evolution one are grossly underdeveloped and appear way too late in the article.
  • Genome and Research should be the last two sections.
  • "The scientific community" section is badly named and too limited in scope. It should be revamped into a sort of "scientific impact" or something, which includes the nobel prizes, the genome sequencing projects and collaborations.

Headbomb {talk / contribs / physics / books} 06:32, 19 November 2013 (UTC)[edit]

Perhaps deserving of a mention?  fredgandt 12:51, 6 January 2014 (UTC)

Have put this in at 'see also' OpenWorm Iztwoz (talk) 11:43, 25 February 2014 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Caenorhabditis elegans/GA2. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Narayanese (talk · contribs) 05:54, 28 June 2014 (UTC)

Intitial comments[edit]

  • Lead and research sections
    • What kind of research is this model organism good for?
Have added sentence to lead - think rest is covered in Research section. Iztwoz (talk) 12:17, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Microanatomy
    • Gut granules: I think this should be moved to its own article, link through a mention somewhere in this article; given too much weight at present
Disagree with this. The section is quite small and relevant and of interest in article. Iztwoz (talk) 12:17, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Ecology
    • What eats these worms, is it known? (predators/parasites)
Added sentence. Iztwoz (talk) 12:54, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
I realise now there's very little known, but I like the addition you did. Narayanese (talk) 20:05, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Notable Findings
    • Move/merge chromosome number and sex determination into genome
Merged to Reproduction and development but may need a citation. Iztwoz (talk) 12:39, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Per WP:SCICITE it doesn't actually need that citation - it's textbook stuff.
    • Move/cut down the section on meiosis to reproduction - is radiation resistance really that notable discovery?
It's the repair mechanism involved in the radiation part that is of interest so overall would agree that since it is missing in other organisms is a notable discovery. Iztwoz (talk) 05:56, 7 July 2014 (UTC)
Also feel that info on meiosis is more relevant to findings than to reproduction section Iztwoz (talk) 17:24, 7 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Genome
    • "Introns, or non-expressed sequences, are 26% of the genome" is unclear if its intergenic as well - why would you only give the number for introns?
    • Why the dislike of whole genome shotgun?
rm changed link to genome sequencing as per entry and rm arguable criticism of technique Iztwoz (talk) 17:32, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

**(nitpicking, unimportant) "gene predictions": new genes would be discovered by mRNA sequencing or so, not dependent on prediction from dna sequence, right? Gene model

  • Evolution
    • The cited paper is weak evidence.

Article history is stable. References and external links look fine. Sasata's tags have point though.

I might edit the article myself, don't be afraid to revert my changes - I don't want to end up approve my very own version for GA. Narayanese (talk) 05:54, 28 June 2014 (UTC)

Regarding the genomes of other species in the genus like C. brenneri: I think those are already done, I can find files for them at [1]. Narayanese (talk) 15:24, 28 June 2014 (UTC)

Noted in text and gave ref Iztwoz (talk) 17:32, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
Nice. Narayanese (talk) 06:20, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

Regarding '10% of the 20,000 genes in its genome are 'essential', meaning that RNAi knockdown of those genes resulted in "sterility, embryonic or larval lethality, slow post-embryonic growth, or a post-embryonic defect." ': this is not what the cited article says (Nonv is its category of essential genes), and it makes little sense to call genes whose knockdown causes post-embryonic defects or slow growth 'essential' since the worms manage to survive. Narayanese (talk) 09:40, 6 July 2014 (UTC)

Agreed very unclear and not true to ref....rm this part and replace with more generalised ref on genetic interaction. Iztwoz (talk) 17:28, 7 July 2014 (UTC)
Think all your points have been covered. Let me know if I've missed anything...thanks Iztwoz (talk) 17:45, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
Yup, they are. Happy to see the little rough edges of the article going smooth through your edits. Narayanese (talk) 20:05, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

On GA criteria[edit]

  • 1a. Clear prose: yes, it's easy to read. Exception are Latin-derived terms like vermiform for worm-like, but at least they're wikilinked.
  • 1b. Layout: good. Headers make sense, and the lead while near the minimum length manage to cover the basics.
  • 2. References: they're ok.
  • 3a. Broad coverage: yes. It has must-haves like Brenner, WormBase, composts, cell count, genome sequencing date, RNA interference, taxonomy.
  • 3b. You say death fluorescence and oocyte radiation resistance are not straying into too obscure topics, so I'll trust you. I see from that meiosis has notable worm research, so fine with it's inclusion in the section.
  • 4. Neutral: yes. I'll give you a while to have a changce to revert my edits though.
  • 5. Stable: yes.
  • 6. Images: there are, and they're appropriate to the subject and have a free license (CC-SA).

Narayanese (talk) 06:20, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

Some more[edit]

"Some large, intergenic regions contain the usually found repetitive DNA sequences. " This is not really true to the spirit of what the source says: "For example, although only 26% of the genome sequence is predicted to be intronic, it contains 51% of the tandem repeats and 45% of the inverted repeats. The 47% of the genome sequence that is predicted to be intergenic contains only 49% of the tandem repeats and 55% of the inverted repeats.", so I would remove that sentence. Narayanese (talk) 06:02, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Iztwoz (talk) 09:19, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

Please fix the deadlink and the bare url citation. Thanks, Sasata (talk) 19:39, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

Latin name[edit]

Whoever inserted the IPA pronunciation for the Latin name actually reported an American pronunciation. Although it may be hard to figure out the real Latin pronunciation, this still seems wrong. As an Italian speaker (the most direct descendant of Latin, albeit still with sound shifts) I would pronounce this differently. What is the Wikipedia policy on IPA for Latin? Feangio (talk) 12:40, 13 March 2015 (UTC)

File:Caenorhabditis elegans hermaphrodite adult-en.svg to appear as POTD[edit]

Hello! This is a note to let the editors of this article know that File:Caenorhabditis elegans hermaphrodite adult-en.svg will be appearing as picture of the day on August 13, 2015. You can view and edit the POTD blurb at Template:POTD/2015-08-13. If this article needs any attention or maintenance, it would be preferable if that could be done before its appearance on the Main Page. Thanks! — Chris Woodrich (talk) 00:39, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

Picture of the day
Caenorhabditis elegans diagram

A lateral (left side) anatomical diagram of an adult-stage nematode hermaphrodite Caenorhabditis elegans (full size) with emphasis on the digestive and reproductive systems. C. elegans is a free-living, transparent nematode (roundworm) which measures about 1 millimetre (0.039 in) in length. The hermaphrodite form, as seen here, is the most common, although a male form is also found. When self-inseminated, the species will lay about 300 eggs, but when the hermaphrodite is inseminated by a male, the number of progeny can exceed 1,000.

Diagram: K.D. Schroeder
ArchiveMore featured pictures...

Errors in gene statistics.[edit]

The current page says that C. Elegans contains 16,000 RNA genes. I am unable to find support for this statement. The edit was originally made here: However, it links to an article citing the original number of RNA genes detected in an older survey, not the newer number. I was unable (afger some searching) to find any evidence that C. Elegans has 16,000 RNA genes (which would be pretty cool) (talk) 23:31, 18 October 2015 (UTC)

Circadian rhythm[edit]

There's been a lot of research in recent years on circadian rhythm in C. elegans, with both light and temperature entrainment. Zyxwv99 (talk) 02:37, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

slivdsov — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:39, 16 December 2015 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Question? Archived sources still need to be checked

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Please add monocentric chromosomal pairing photos and drawings[edit]

Please add monocentric chromosomal pairing photos and drawings. We should photograph Caenorhabditis elegans' chromosomes if possible, and of course add new paragraphs and links. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A02:587:410F:9100:5991:CEBC:671A:4E79 (talk) 22:38, 12 May 2016 (UTC)

Male Mating[edit]

I noticed that there wasn't much information on male mating in the reproduction section, so I'm adding a short description of what occurs along with an animated gif. Kbrugman (talk) 05:33, 13 October 2016 (UTC)