Anesthetizing tubificids

Nicole Dubilier ndubilie at
Wed Oct 13 15:51:15 EST 1999

Dear Annelidians,

A while ago I asked for suggestions on anesthetizing lumbricids and 
received many helpful suggestions. I am now back to my pet worms, 
gutless marine tubificid oligochaetes, and am trying to get them to hold still 
while I stick a needle through them . I started off with the classical 
meiofauna anesthetic MgCl and this worked well but unfortunately MgCl 
inhibits the symbiotic bacteria in these worms. What I need is an 
anesthetic that will knock out the worms but leave their bacteria active. I 
have heard that lidocain, the stuff dentists use on Homo sapiens, is 
supposed to work well on annelids. Has anyone ever worked with this or 
have any other suggestions?  


Nicole Dubilier

Dr. Nicole Dubilier
Dept. of Molecular Ecology
Max-Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology
Celsiusstr. 1, D-28359 Bremen, Germany
Tel.: +49 421 2028-932, Fax: +49 421 2028-580
ndubilie at

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