Function of Protein Kinase C-1 in memory in Caenorhabditis elegans
Assays that utilized their naïve attractive response were performed on N2 wild-type C. elegans and the pkc-1 mutant nj1, to determine how long the effects of the associative conditioning to these odors would last. We compared chemotaxis indices following conditioning for delay periods of 30 min, 4 hours, and 12 hours. We found that wild-type C. elegans form food-odor associations and retain them for at least 12 hours. Results show that nj1 displays less of a reduction in affinity following conditioning as compared to wild-type, which demonstrates an impairment in memory. Our results also showed a decreased affinity towards benzaldehyde in naïve nj1 nematodes, suggesting an impairment in the olfactory pathway. Thus, nj1 show not only impairments in food-odor associative memory, but potentially impairments in the olfactory pathway as well.