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Experimental evolution strategies have been used to alter both phenotypic and genotypic characteristics of populations under laboratory selective pressures. In this project, an outbred population of Drosophila melanogaster will undergo selection for adaptation to high-sugar (HS) diets during early adulthood. Previous studies showed that HS feeding reduces the lifespan and health span in adult Drosophila, including obesity and hyperglycemia, compared to control flies. Therefore, the longest-lived survivors of chronic HS feeding will be mated to produce each generation, allowing selection for protective alleles. We hypothesize that the HS-adapted population will increase its tolerance to HS feeding over time, whereas the control population will not. To quantify tolerance to HS and determine if adaptation has occurred, weights will be recorded from flies from each of the populations. Triacylglyceride (TAG) and glucose concentrations will also be quantified over the course of the experiment. A shift of HS-selected populations toward more control-like phenotypes will be considered evidence for adaptation. Ultimately, these data will be used in tandem with whole genome sequencing to analyze evolutionary changes that dictate the effects of genotype on health during overnutrition.



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Evaluation of TAG and Glucose Concentrations to Determine the Degree of Adaptation to a High-Sugar Diet in Drosophila melanogaster