Assessment Practical Proposal Assignment



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Table of Contents

Introduction. 2

Background and statement of problem.. 2

Research questions. 2

Research aims and objectives. 2

Literature review.. 2

Study design. 2

Research sampling. 2

Data collection. 2

Data analysis. 2

Ethical considerations. 2

Conclusion. 2

Reference List 3





The present study is attempting to analyse the reaction of freshwater planarian flatworms as commonly known flatworms in drug-infused solution to see how it the pharmacological developments (Pagán et al. 2009). It is very important to ensure that how the flatworms react to the drug given it has the neurotransmitter system as the human, and monitoring the same would generate better insights (Shah et al. 2020).

Background and statement of the problem

It is very relevant to study the planarian worms in the presence of drugs as the scientists appreciate their regenerative powers and qualities such as the simplicity or easy-to-use model for drug effects (Pagán et al. 2009). For both had brain and spinal cord, and the same neurotransmitter system as the human, the use of the planarian worms is quite frequent and their responses to these drugs release in their presence help the scientists and pharmacologist to monitor these pharmacological developments and recognise the effectivity of the drug accordingly. Monitoring the planaria locomotion and their behavioural reactions would be effective for the effectiveness of the drugs (Martinez et al. 2021).

Research questions

The use drug propranolol would be infused to focus on the locomotion and the behaviours of the planarian worms (Williams et al. 2020). Development of research questions have been conducted to guide the research and they are as follows:

  • What is the instant reaction of the planarian worms after their transfer to the petri dish with propranolol?
  • How does the propranolol solution react to it?
  • How quickly does the planarian disintegrate, if they do?
  • How much does the lethality of the planarians depend on the propranolol infused concentration and the time of exposure?

Research aims and objectives

The aim of the present research assessment and the experiment is to scientifically monitor the locomotion of the planarian and to detect how does it behave in the presence of the drug- propranolol. To effectively comprehend the overall adjustments and how the element of lethality or the disintegration of the flatworms occurs in the presence of the drug infused concentration in the Petri dishes (Raffa et al. 2001). The objectives are as follow:

  • To effectively monitor the locomotion of planarian in the presence of propranolol
  • To effectively comprehend if the drugs have any different effect on other organisms
  • To form a legible understanding of various concentration of drugs
  • To recognise the statistical analysis of the planarian reactions

Literature review

According to (Pagán et al. 2009), the study conducted a study where the DMSO concentration has been used to effectively monitor the locomotion of the planarian and how the aspect of lethality and their disintegration occur based on the duration they were kept in the Petri dishes. The study also suggested the toxicological materials and used toxicology methods where the petri dish has been divided into four different compartments (Jawad et al. 2018). The use of APW solution and DMSO concentration is what has been used in the study where the entire methodology of the study has been conducted with a dissecting microscope (Martinez et al. 2021). The observation of the worms has been conducted with 30 minutes of duration, following and observing the behaviours and the locomotion of the planarians. (Martinez et al. 2021) suggests that the behavioural reactions and the locomotion of the freshwater planarians are found to be different and have separate responses. The phototaxy and the behavioural responses or the stress responses are found to be repeatable by the researchers. Being an environmental bio-indicator, these worms have sensitivity to have effective response especially during the organism culturing in the lab (Ofoegbu et al. 2019). Six behavioural challenges have been integrated into the study where the aspect of locomotion, light stress, planarian light and dark test and even use of shoaling and foraging. According to (Shah et al. 2020), the overall aspect of using planarian as a cheap pre-screening tool to effectively predict the aspect of strong skin irritants. Different irritants using in five variant concentrations have been conducted to effectively comprehend the increasing damages that these concentrations have caused to the planarians to effectively comprehend the complete aspect of their disintegration in the testing compounds and the Petri dishes during the lab culture (Turel et al. 2020).

Study design

Use of PRISM software package would be used where the entire study would be explorative in nature. Having little to no secondary or previous information, the entire study would focus on the experimental study design where the overall assessment would be conducted with the effective involvement of the scientific approach (Williams et al. 2020). Use of repeated measure and independent groups or matched groups would be used to effectively comprehend the overall understanding of the study and monitor the progression of the organism culture. Use of true-experimental research design would be implemented to effectively manipulate the variable and in order to be able to have a random distribution (Voura et al. 2020).

Research sampling

Use of planarians as an animal model to effectively conduct the scientific study where the petri dish would be compartmentalised in four different areas with different amount of Propranolol concentration to observe and monitor the changes in them (Turel et al. 2020). The lethality and the duration of the time would be conducted to effectively analyse the overall experiments using the locomotion and the behavioural reactions of the planarians (Shah et al. 2020). The use of 8-10 planarian worms would be used for the effective monitoring and behavioural developments of the same in the presence of propranolol where their responses would be monitored effectively. The use of clustered sampling has been implemented to divide the planarian population into four groups (Raffa et al. 2001).

Data collection

The data collection process would be conducted during the reaction of the planarian once they are transferred into the Petri dishes with propranolol concentration (Pagán et al. 2009). The entire study would focus on the observational study where effective monitoring would be implemented to identify the disintegration, the lethality and the changes, if any the worms are able to generate because of the different variations of drugs concentrations. The entire data collection process would be conducted based on the monitoring and steady progression of the scientific experiment during the organism culture with the worms (Ofoegbu et al. 2019).

Data analysis

The data analysis would be conducted using the diagnostic data analysis technique to effectively diagnose the reasons behind the outcomes that the worms would be perpetuating from the time they are transferred into the Petri dishes (Martinez et al. 2021).

Ethical considerations

Since planarians are invertebrate in nature, the aspect of ethical consideration is barely any. It is also inexpensive and costs no sorts of permission to acquire. The protocols would be outlined at low costs. An additional observation would be implemented for the toxic effects of the experiments (Jawad et al. 2018).


The study has been assessed with an attempt to find an effective understanding of the reactions of the drug propranolol to planarian flatworms and how their lethality, disintegration and locomotion could be effective for future pharmacological developments.

Reference List

Jawad, R.A.M., Hutchinson, C.V. and Prados, J., 2018. Dissociation of place preference and tolerance responses to sucrose using a dopamine antagonist in the planarian. Psychopharmacology235(3), pp.829-836.

Martinez, O., Sire, S., Saunier, A., Malgouyres, J.M., Fournier, A. and Vignet, C., 2021. Behavioral responses of three freshwater planaria species to light, visual and olfactory stimuli: Setting the stage for further ecotoxicological studies. Behavioural Processes183, p.104295.

Ofoegbu, P.U., Lourenço, J., Mendo, S., Soares, A.M. and Pestana, J.L., 2019. Effects of low concentrations of psychiatric drugs (carbamazepine and fluoxetine) on the freshwater planarian, Schmidtea mediterranea. Chemosphere217, pp.542-549.

Pagán, O.R., Coudron, T. and Kaneria, T., 2009. The flatworm planaria as a toxicology and behavioral pharmacology animal model in undergraduate research experiences. Journal of Undergraduate Neuroscience Education7(2), p.A48.

Raffa, R.B., Holland, L.J. and Schulingkamp, R.J., 2001. Quantitative assessment of dopamine D2 antagonist activity using invertebrate (Planaria) locomotion as a functional endpoint. Journal of pharmacological and toxicological methods45(3), pp.223-226.

Shah, S.I., Williams, A.C., Lau, W.M. and Khutoryanskiy, V.V., 2020. Planarian toxicity fluorescent assay: A rapid and cheap pre-screening tool for potential skin irritants. Toxicology in Vitro69, p.105004.

Turel, Z.B., Prados, J. and Urcelay, G.P., 2020. Heat shock disrupts expression of excitatory and extinction memories in planaria: Interaction with amount of exposure. Behavioural Processes179, p.104197.

Turel, Z.B., Prados, J. and Urcelay, G.P., 2020. Heat shock disrupts expression of excitatory and extinction memories in planaria: Interaction with amount of exposure. Behavioural Processes179, p.104197.

Voura, E.B., Pulquerio, C.H., Fong, R.A., Imani, Z., Rojas, P.J., Pratt, A.M., Shantel, N.M. and Livengood, E.J., 2020. A Planarian Motility Assay to Gauge the Biomodulating Properties of Natural Products. JoVE (Journal of Visualized Experiments), (159), p.e61070.

Williams, K.B., Bischof, J., Lee, F.J., Miller, K.A., LaPalme, J.V., Wolfe, B.E. and Levin, M., 2020. Regulation of axial and head patterning during planarian regeneration by a commensal bacterium. Mechanisms of development163, p.103614.


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