A synchronized population of C. elegans is injected into the microfluidic platform at the last larval stage prior to sexual maturity (L4). Worms are confined within dedicated microfluidic chambers and are continuously fed with an E. coli solution.
Worms are continuously exposed to the test compounds right after the injection (L4 stage) until the end of the experiment, which is determined by the death of the last worm in the control group. The test compounds are mixed with the E. coli solution. Freeze-dried OP50 E. coli are used as a food source, preventing the metabolization of the tested molecules by the bacteria.
The images of each microfluidic chamber are recorded every hour. Starting from 120 hours post-worm injection, short video sequences are recorded every six hours for each microfluidic chamber. The processing of the acquired images and videos provides information on worms’ health and life spans.