Using dead E. coli as worm food

Peg MacMorris macmorri at
Tue Sep 27 10:04:51 EST 1994

> Re heat-killed E. coli as worm food:
> About 15 years ago, Dick Russell and I did some careful expts. on this.
> Autoclaving doesn't work well, as the cells clump and the clumps are
> too big for worms to ingest. Milder heat-killing avoids this, but it
> seems that it produces something (only partially removable by washing)
> that inhibits worm growth.
> The best alternative we found was to use streptomycin-killed OP50. At
> concentrations of 200-400 microgm/ml, OP50 is efficiently killed in a
> few hours. The metabolic state of these cells is unclear. The incidence
> of strep-resistant mutant OP50 is low enough not to worry. UV-killing
> is a decent alternative, but a pain for large quantities.
> If someone has a particular objective in mind for using dead E. coli, let
> me know and I might be able to help.
> Lew Jacobson
> Biological Sciences
> Univ. Pittsburgh

Did you ever try microwaving E. coli?  I tried but didn't get adequate
killing of the E. coli and eventually resorted to streptomycin and no
peptone in the agar plates to prevent E.coli growth. 
Peg MacMorris         Voice: (812) 855-0102                     
Dept. of Biology                Fax: (812) 855-6705                     
Jordan Hall                Internet: macmorri at 
Indiana University                                                      
Bloomingtion, IN 47405            

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