So far in TRIP, I have completed by first screen project and presentation where I analyzed the effects of St. John’s Wort and Darkness on fruit fly anxiety/overall fitness levels. The experiment was very interesting and was definitely a new experience for me. Getting to conduct my own experiment was super fun and educational. I had a couple of issues with flies… well, flying away, but luckily, I was able to collect conclusive data.
I found that the St. John’s Wort drug enhanced energy levels in flies (which was seen through their monitored activity) and long exposure to darkness severely hindered energy levels in flies (which was seen through their lack of activity). This data could be used to derive conclusions on the effects of darkness on depression in humans, and how St. John’s Wort can counteract that which, to me, is pretty cool! I presented this information yesterday to my peers, the instructors, and the assistant instructors, and it went pretty well! This was the first scientific lab-based presentation I had ever given!