Determining the effect of glucose concentration on the chemotactic response of Tetrahymena thermophila


  • Ambi Atienza
  • Bernice Huynh
  • Judy Lee


Chemotaxis is vital for the survival of Tetrahymena thermophila in various environmental
conditions. Thus, the chemotaxis of T. thermophila was investigated in efforts to find an optimal
concentration range of glucose at which a strong positive response occurs. T. thermophila were
starved in 10mM Tris-HCl, pH = 7.5 for 24 hours then subjected to our glucose and control
treatments using a 2-chamber assay apparatus. This was set up by suspending a 2 mL pipette
containing 1mL of the glucose solution into a 6 mL test tube containing 2 mL of the starved T.
thermophila. After fixing the cells with 1% glutaraldehyde, the cells in each replicate were counted
using haemocytometer slides. A one-way ANOVA test followed by a Tukey HSD test showcased
a statistically significant difference in glucose concentrations of 1 x 10-1 M and 1x10-6 M, however
there was no statistically significant difference among the other treatments. Our study
demonstrated that T. thermophila exhibits a stronger chemotactic response to higher
concentrations of glucose. However, an optimal glucose concentration range for strong chemotaxis
response was not determined.