Inherited peripheral neuropathy is a heterogeneous group of peripheral neurodegenerative disorders including Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. Many peripheral neuropathies often accompany impaired axonal construction and function. To study the molecular and cellular basis of axon-defective peripheral neuropathy, we explore the possibility of using Caenorhabditis elegans, a powerful nematode model equipped with a variety of genetics and imaging tools. In search of potential candidates of C. elegans peripheral neuropathy models, we monitored the movement and the body posture patterns of 26 C. elegans strains with disruption of genes associated with various peripheral neuropathies and compiled a database of their phenotypes. Our assay showed that movement features of the worms with mutations in HSPB1, MFN2, DYNC1H1, and KIF1B human homologues are significantly different from the control strain, suggesting they are viable candidates for C. elegans peripheral neuropathy models.
Keywords: Caenorhabditis elegans; disease model; locomotion; peripheral neuropathy.