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Brain cancer or spinal cancer is the second most common cancer among childhood cancers after leukemia. Cancer in the central nervous system, such as spinal cancer, disrupts the spinal nerves, preventing the patient from carrying out any physical activity. Because of this, most patients with spinal cancer suffer greatly. To understand these symptoms and underlying mechanisms, most research animal use growing cancer cells or non-active materials to the spinal cords of vertebrate animals. However, these types of experiments will cause tremendous pain for vertebrates. The aim of the study was to establish an invertebrate nerve cord compression model for the simulation of spinal cancer research.

The L. terrestris, an invertebrate subject, has a relatively advanced neural network compared to its taxonomic status.  Weights were placed onto its nerve cord and injected neurologic drugs such as alcohol, lidocaine and acetylcholine. Then, the action potential was measured. The parameters of the action potentials were investigated while the earthworm’s nerve cord was pressed to see the relationship between the parameters of wave latent period, peak point, trough point, and wave width and the pressed weight under the influence of the neurologic drugs which were injected to determine how these drugs affect invertebrate nerve cords. It was concluded that there existed a linear relationship between the parameters with the weight and volume of the infused drug. Just by showing this relationship, the data proves the importance of the development of an advanced invertebrate animal model for spinal cancer study. By using invertebrate models, scientists can save many mammals like rodents that are used for spinal cord cancer studies, money and time for developing practical treatment modalities. Therefore, more research is needed for spinal cancer models from invertebrate animals. This study examines variations in the action potential of Lumbricus terrestris when it's spinal cord is pressed with a 100 g weight standard. A 10% alcohol and 1 ug/ul lidocaine solution was slowly injected near the ventral cord region before the action potential test was conducted. The earthworm's nervous system is managed by its cerebral ganglion, to which the ventral nerve cord is attached and runs through the body. Based on our observation on parameters from action potentials, this study concluded that there might exist high feasibility of an advanced invertebrate spinal cancer model that could be applicable for spinal cancer. Future studies might be needed to clarify why different parameters have specific changes.

Action potential, nerve conduction, spinal cord compression, spinal cord cancer

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How to Cite
SUNGKWAN SO, J., & LEE, J. (2019). DEVELOPING AN INVERTEBRATE NERVE CORD COMPRESSION MODEL FOR SPINAL CANCER STUDY. Journal of International Research in Medical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, 14(3), 83–91. Retrieved from
Original Research Article


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