By: Markus K. and Max V.
In the school year 2021-2022, we took a class called Genetics and Biotechnology Honors. Throughout the year, we learned how to use pipettes, micropipettes, microscopes, electrophoresis machines, etc. However, the highlight of this class was the fly experiments we performed in the second half of the year.
In the beginning, we were given one vial of stock flies to take care of and breed to make more vials. During our time of getting the flies to reproduce, we were supposed to develop a test to perform on the flies and learn how to take care of them. It was difficult at first to take care of the flies and create the right mixture of food. We messed up a lot, but over time we were able to create almost 20 vials of flies by the end of our experiment.
Hypothesis and Reason For Experiment
For our experiment, we tested the lifespan of flies if introduced to Bang, an energy drink, through their typical food. We chose Bang because it was high in super creatine, a new compound with little research. Our hypothesis was; “If the flies are exposed to the Bang energy drink, their lifespan will decrease.”
How The Test Was Performed
We started by separating a small number of flies into three separate tubes with three different types of a Bang-water mixture. However, throughout the experiment, we noticed that not much changed with their life span. With that new knowledge, we switched our testing to the mental state of the flies instead.
We used a circular container to encase the flies. We had a paper under the container with a series of rings to measure the distance the flies had traveled. If the flies went to the edge of the container, they were estimated to be more anxious, while those in the middle were more relaxed.
Using this method, we learned that flies that had consumed more Bang than other flies were more anxious and moved to the outside of the container. We also learned while observing the flies that if there were more Bang in the Bang-water mixture, they would stay down by their food longer. It shows that the flies liked the drink’s sweetness and wanted to eat more of it, making it so it would stay in their systems longer.
When we first stepped into this class, we thought it would be different from what it turned out to be. However, as the year progressed, we were given freedom, second chances, and help when needed as the year went. This experiment and this class taught us one thing; always look for new opportunities.
While it was a science class, it emphasized teamwork. You had to figure out what experiment to do, how to perform some actions, and how specific work would be split up throughout the group. Our teacher was great too. He always made sure people understood what they were doing.
We seriously recommend this class to anyone who is allowed to be a part of something like this. It was fun, exciting, and informative. We’re glad we could be a part of this class and do as much as we did.