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Chemotherapy Drugs on Fruit Flies

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Abhay Malik

on 18 March 2014

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Transcript of Chemotherapy Drugs on Fruit Flies

At the University of Massachusetts Amherst, scientist Michele Markstein used a new model to test chemotherapy drugs(for cancer)

This model tested FDA-approved drugs in the intestines of fruit flies(Drosophila)

Stem cells in intestine of adult fruit fly similar to human
Side effect of Anti-Cancer Drugs

They found that the majority of fruit flies impeded the cancerous tumor growth by taking the drug

This shows that flies can be used as a clinical model in stem cell research
The old model forced the scientists to dissect each fly and check for any abnormalities

This new method used an enzyme from fireflies, called luciferase, which is what allows fireflies to glow

It was much more efficient and made the tumors easy to find
New Method

Side Effects
When anti-cancer drugs were tested on mice, they had almost identical results

The mice had triggered the TNF-alpha pathway and flies had triggered pathway called JAK-STAT

Triggering of these pathways is usually corrrelated to cancer in the future
Similar Results
Markstein determined that flies are a reliable source of study of stem cells for the future

Scientists still have much to learn about chemotherapy and the long-term effects the drugs might have

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death, and important to study treatment




Works Cited
First they inserted caner-causing gene into intestines of flies, and let tumors develop

Then fed the FDA-approved drugs to the fruit flies
The surprising side effect is a dramatic increase in non-tumor stem cells

This increase results in other tumors being created

Tumors could become deadly
Full transcript