Over the last 3 weeks, I have been looking at the effect of repeated exposure to Carbon Dioxide on fruit flies as part of the TRIP initiative. I have enjoyed every minute of my time with TRIP, although to say it was all smooth sailing would be a lie. I have encountered a huge number of challenges over the course of my experiment. Things have gone wrong in ways I didn't know was possible. For example, I recently put flies in a smaller chamber to measure their sociability. After 5 minutes I found that they were all very close together. In another 5 minutes, they had yet to move. As it turns out they did NOT all become very sociable suddenly but instead found some wet glue to drown in. Issues like this have become very common over the course of the program
It's not all bad news, though. The data I have been gathering is beginning to come together and form results. Though I thought I was just getting noise at the beginning, clear and statistically significant results are beginning to show. As it turns out, CO2 does have real and clear effects on fly fertility and on fly behavior. To see what I think this means for humans, you will need to wait until the TRIP symposium!
Author: Peter L.