cans of worms?

Ron Kagan rkagan at
Mon Aug 29 18:35:00 EST 1994

In article <199408292034.AA17366 at> Jeffrey Yuan,
>Yes, your friend is quite a noble person to do biochemistry on worms. 
Once a 
>upon a time, I also did some biochemistry on worms and also found
getting large 
>quantities of worms to be troublesome.  However, I did speak to several
>at Merck in Jim Schaeffer's group (he is in the gazette) who actively do 
>biochemistry on C. elegans to find out how they got large quantities of
>They used a 300 liter fermenter (!!!) to grow up large batches of worms.
>However, to seed the fermenter they started out with over 14 liters of
>starved liquid cultures ( not a trivial task in itself).  Anyway, people
in Jim 
>Schaeffer's group might be of assistance.  If your friend (or anyone
else) has 
>any questions (or secrets) on how to grow large batches of worms I would
love to
>hear about them and will post any bits of info to the Net.
>Jeffrey Yuan  

A good refernce on this by Gbewonyo, et al. appeared in _Bio/Technology
(1994)  vol. 12, pp.51-54.  The authors developed a multi-step protocol
in which they were finally able to harvest 500 grams of worms from a
150-liter bioreactor.  They got to 150 L by starting off with 50 plates,
which they then used to innoculate 20 liters, which in turn was used to
innoculate 150 L...  

I don't know of any simpler way to get large quantities of worms.  I was
able to get 3-4 grams per liter of liquid culture following standard

Ron Kagan

"My Kindness is not random, and nothing senseless was ever beautiful."

                                                 - J. Zabriskie
Ron Kagan
rkagan at

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