In C-Fern, many male gametophytes are determinate in growth, that is, they grow, develop many antheridia, release sperm, and die. However, male gametophytes can regenerate as hermaphrodites if transferred to isolated cultures from multi-gametophyte cultures as old as 21 days.
Because gametophytes are only a single cell thick, a simple wet mount of C-Fern gameophgytes can show cellular details that are only visible in other systems by making thin sections. You also can use wet mounts of very young sporophytes.
C-Fern sperm can be seen at magnifications as low as 20X. The critical factor is light from below and proper adjustment of the light source. If all else fails, try placing a piece of aluminum foil with a pencil lead-sized hole in it under the Petri dish culture or slide. View sperm swimming in the […]
C-Fern Growth Pods are the easiest way to maintain cultures.
C-Fern antheridiogen, the pheromone which determines the sexual phenotype of gametophytes, can be easily harvested and used in experiments. Use old cultures of gametophytes, preferably those which are not contaminated, and carefully scrape the gametophytes from the surface. Next, freeze and then thaw the agar. The antheridiogen containing liquid will separate from the agar and […]
C-Fern spores can be evenly spread in Petri dishes by using nickel-chromium wire (ca 0.64 mm) in an inoculation loop holder. Nickel-chromium wires can be repeatedly flamed to achieve surface-sterilization. This thinner wire gives superior results compared to using thicker plastic or metal spreaders. However, if you take care, thicker spreaders will work – even […]
There are several options for preparing C-Fern medium, depending on timing, planning, and the equipment available. If an autoclave is not available, powdered Basic C-Fern Nutrient Medium can be easily prepared using a microwave.
You can find out more about using C-Fern in the classroom, for independent laboratory investigations to student-initiated and directed research and for all levels of other research by using this site. The following sections provide additional and more detailed information about using C-Fern for teaching or research Teaching with C-Fern – Additional material for exercises […]
You can use C-Fern to investigate a wide variety of biological principles, scientific methods and laboratory techniques! For grades 7 – 12 and college-level biology Simple and rapid set up by teacher or students Explore a broad spectrum of biological principles Introduces simple, failproof axenic culture techniques Highly Adaptable – from teacher demonstrations to student […]
Both C-Fern gametophytes and sporophytes are easy to culture in the classroom or in a research environment can be axenically cultured on simple inorganic media in Petri dishes. Because they are free-living and autotrophic, easy and foolproof culture techniques allow both gametophytes and sporophytes to be conveniently cultured and manipulated with minimal training and equipment. […]
To purchase C-Fern spores, growing supplies, the C-Fern Manual, Laboratory Kits, and Exercises, please contact a C-Fern vendor. Other equipment and supplies can be easily constructed or obtained locally – please refer to this website. Carolina Biological Supply CompanyPO Box 6010Burlington, NC 27216-6010 Customer Service Support US CustomersPhone: 800.334.5551 or 336.446.7600 International CustomersPhone: 336-584-0381