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How to separate Drosophila heads?

Postby smadireddy » Thu Mar 28, 2019 5:36 pm

Hi, I'm working on a project where I'd like to separate heads of flightless fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) for further analysis. Is there a quick, efficient way to separate fruit fly heads from bodies (preferably in bulk?) I only have access to equipment typical of a high school biology lab. The only protocol I've seen so far is one using liquid nitrogen, but I don't think that's feasible for me. Is there any other way to do this? Thanks!

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Occupation: Retired molecular biologist, university researcher and teacher

Re: How to separate Drosophila heads?

Postby SciB » Sat Mar 30, 2019 5:21 pm

I don't know of any mechanical way to separate Drosophila bodies from heads. I think you will just have to do it manually using fine-tipped forceps and scalpel. You will, of course, euthanize the flies first before performing this operation. Do you plan on using the heads right away? If not I would recommend doing some reading to find out how to store them properly until use, which depends on what sort of analysis you intend to use them for.

Post again when you have more questions.


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