I set up 4 vials: one with no dye, and three with various colors (Red #40, Blue #1, and Yellow #5). When I tested the memory assay on all of these, the control larvae passed with flying colors (pun intended) while the color-fed larvae wandered towards the banana side and into the middle of the test plate. Given TRIP’s succinct schedule, there are many factors I am still eager to test, but I do not have enough time.
I scaled down the maximum dose of dyes for children 2-5 y/o into a fly dose, but this measurement can be tweaked to test the effects of less/more dye in the diet. The specific dyes I used can also be switched out for other artificial dyes. I tested the effect on larvae, but adult flies may also have a reaction. I am also interested in more extensive neural effects that dyes may have, such as energy and aggression levels.