Main Article Content



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

Article Details

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


Roswell Park. Understanding brain tumors: The basics; 2018.

ACS. Key statistics for brain and spinal cord tumors in children. American Cancer Society; 2018.

Mayo Clinic. Spinal cord tumor. Spinal Cord Tumor Care at Mayo Clinic.

Abhishek Purkayastha, Neelam Sharma, Madakasira Sitaram Sridhar, Dwivedi Abhishek. Intramedullary glioblastoma multiforme of spine with intracranial supratentorial metastasis: Progressive disease with a multifocal picture. Asian Journal of Neurosurgery. 2018;13(4):1209-1212.

Kenan Arnautovic, Aska Arnautovic. Extramedullary intradural spinal tumors: A review of modern diagnostic and treatment options and a report of a series. Bosnia Journal of Basic Medical Sciences. 2009;9(Suppl. 1): S40-S45.

Vishwa S. Raj, La Tanya Lofton. Rehabilitation and treatment of spinal cord tumors. 2013;36(1):4-11.

Cossigny D, Quan GM. In vivo animal models of spinal metastasis. Cancer Metastasis Reviews. 2012;31(1-2):99-108.

Chand Khanna, Kent Hunter. Modeling metastasis in vivo. Carcinogenesis. 2005;26(3):513-523.

Zion Zibly, Cody D. Schlaff, Ira Gordon, Jeeva Munasinghe, Kevin A. Camphausen. A novel rodent model of spinal metastasis and spinal cord compression. BMC Neuroscience. 2012;13(137):1-7.

Lisa Marie Ruppert. Malignant spinal cord compression-adapting conventional rehabilitation approaches. Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am. 2017;28(1):101-114.

Janos Magyar, Norbert Szentandrassy, Tama Banyasz, Laszlo Fulop, Andras Varro, Peter P. Nanasi. Effects of thymol on calcium and potassium currents in canine and human ventricular cardiomyocytes. British Journal of Pharmacology. 2002;136(2):330-338.

Mitchell MR, Plant S. Effect of lidocaine on action potentials, currents and contractions in the absence and presence of ouabain in guinea-pig ventricular cells. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Physiology. 1988;73:379-390.

Maelle Jospin, Yingchuan B. Qi, Tamara M. Stawicki, Thomas Boulin, Kim R. Schuske, H. Robert Horvitz, Jean-Louis Bessereau, Erik M. Jorgensen, Yishi Jin. A neuronal acetylcholine receptor regulates the balance of muscle excitation and inhibition in Caenorhabditis elegans. PLOS Biology; 2009.

Richard J. Kovacs, John C. Bailey. Effects of acetylcholine on action potential characteristics of atrial and ventricular myocardium after bilateral cervical vagotomy in the cat. Circulation Research. 1985;56:613-620.