Evol Ecol Res 11: 403-412 (2009) Full PDF if your library subscribes.
Hydra as a model organism to teach biology in secondary schools
Patricia E. Bossert
Stony Brook University, Long Island Group Advancing Science Education (LIGASE), New York; Nassau Community College, Garden City, New York; Eastern Suffolk Board of Cooperative Education Services (BOCES), Holbrook, New York, USA
Correspondence: P.E. Bossert, 13 Woodpath Drive, Northport, NY 11768, USA.
Aim: Using a personal narrative, highlight the influence that university research can have on secondary education.
Questions: How does the presence of algae in individual hydra affect hydra regeneration? What is the role of hydra body size in the response? How do hydra respond to red and blue light?
Organisms: Two strains of the green hydra, Hydra viridissima, one larger than the other.
Methods: Laboratory experiments with the simplest of materials and apparatuses.
Results: Brown hydra, which have no algae and are larger than green hydra, regenerate more successfully after food deprivation than do green algae. But green hydra in well-lit environments may lose control of their algae and find their intracellular spaces overgrown, leading to failure of regeneration and to disintegration of their cells. This fate was more likely in the larger strain of H. viridissima. Hydra are positively phototaxic to blue light and negatively phototaxic to red light.
Conclusions: There is a trade-off between body size and the ability of hydra to take advantage of an algal endosymbiont. Large hydra species and strains may be harmed by the algae within. Hydra have supported scientific awakenings in faculty and students of secondary schools.
Keywords: gene expression, hydra model, phototaxis, regeneration, teaching secondary school inquiry-based biology.
DOWNLOAD A FREE, FULL PDF COPY
IF you are connected using the IP of a subscribing institution (library, laboratory, etc.)
or through its VPN.
© 2009 Patricia E. Bossert. All EER articles are copyrighted by their authors. All authors endorse, permit and license Evolutionary Ecology Ltd. to grant its subscribing institutions/libraries the copying privileges specified below without additional consideration or payment to them or to Evolutionary Ecology, Ltd. These endorsements, in writing, are on file in the office of Evolutionary Ecology, Ltd. Consult authors for permission to use any portion of their work in derivative works, compilations or to distribute their work in any commercial manner.
Subscribing institutions/libraries may grant individuals the privilege of making a single copy of an EER article for non-commercial educational or non-commercial research purposes. Subscribing institutions/libraries may also use articles for non-commercial educational purposes by making any number of copies for course packs or course reserve collections. Subscribing institutions/libraries may also loan single copies of articles to non-commercial libraries for educational purposes.
All copies of abstracts and articles must preserve their copyright notice without modification.