The current research project involves examining the photoreceptors of the fruit fly, Drosophila Melanogaster. Over the last 6 weeks, I have been spending about 2 hours a week working with a program called ImageJ and various slices of photoreceptor cells of Drosphila. I have recorded data such as number of vesicles, number of capitate projections, and the calculated area on Excel. I have spent about 3 hours reading the background information suggested by my supervisor, Jane Anne Horne.

There are 6 slices to be examined per a section of a photoreceptor cell, and there are 10 sections of a photoreceptor cell to be examined per group member. I have been responsible for examining the non-synaptic photoreceptor of a cell, while Lindsay has been responsible for examining the synaptic photoreceptor of a cell. So far, about 8 sections have been examined. When data collection for the non-synaptic photoreceptor is complete, I will calculate the volume of each section of the photoreceptor cell using the area recorded. With the volume and the number of vesicles recorded; I will calculate the density of vesicles in a photoreceptor cell, and with the volume and the number of capitate projections recorded, I will calculate the density of capitate projections in a photoreceptor cell.

When the data collection is completed, I will choose a section of the non-synaptic photoreceptor whose 6 slices are most consistent in its area, number of vesicles and capitate projections, and reconstruct the section using a program called Amira.

Statistical analysis will include t-tests, to compare the non-synaptic photoreceptor to the synaptic photoreceptor. I will represent the results of the project by using a graph of the t-test.

Thanks in advance!

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