Model Organism: Fruit flies
Fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) are common and ubiquitous household visitors. These flies are extremely easy to raise in large numbers and their body parts and behaviors are easy to observe. Before scientists knew exactly what geneswere, they invented the term to describe the heritable physical variation observed in these flies. Despite our physical differences, we share many common genes, and flies are used to study a wide array of human health topics from alcohol intoxication to organ formation.