Date of Award

Fall 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)




College of Science

First Advisor

Fang-Ju Lin


Neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease are characterized by damage to neural cells causing widespread neurological deficits. Historically, these diseases were deemed as inevitable declines in cognitive and neurological function that occurred with aging. Recent research has revealed, however, that these diseases have molecular bases allowing potential clinical intervention. The groundbreaking discoveries have been made using differing model organisms, which can replicate the phenotype and physiological cause of these disorders. One major model organism that has been used is the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. They have served various roles in elucidating gene pathways and neurophysiological bases seen in these diseases. Current research using Drosophila is attempting to further characterize the molecular basis along with potential clinical treatments. These new in-depth studies are in part a result of advancing methodologies, which allows greater flexibility in the types of experiments that can be done with Drosophila.