This summer, I used the nematode model organism C. elegans to examine the cell-type specific response to the depletion of the nascent polypeptide-associated complex (NAC). The NAC is believed to have a chaperone role in the proper folding of nascent peptides produced by ribosomes.  Gut, muscle, and neuronal cells in the worm exhibit different unfolded protein responses (UPR) to NAC depletion.  One significant component of the UPR is the up-regulation of heat-shock proteins, including hsp-4.  My goal is to use fluorescently marked worm strains to correlate the levels of hsp-4 expression with different cell types by using fluorescent microscopy.

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