Medical Research Council - London Institute of Medical Sciences

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A high-resolution 3D model of an entire adult fruit fly brain allows the neuronal connections to be mapped

03 September 2018

Fly Brain

Fruit flies may be quite irritating when they’re hovering around your kitchen. However, partly due to their relatively simple nervous system, studies with fruit flies over the past decade have hugely contributed to our understanding of the brain. For the first time, scientists have been able to create a high-resolution 3D model of an entire adult fruit fly brain by tracing all its 100,000 cells and connections. Thanks to this model, shown here, researchers can now trace the mesh of wires that connect all the brain’s neurons and allow them to communicate with each other. The 3D map also charts the more unknown corners of the fly brain. With over 20 research labs now using this high-resolution model, we may soon be able to unearth some hidden gems in fruit fly anatomy, continuing to improve our path to understanding how the brain works.

Written by Gaëlle Coullon

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