This photograph depicts Drosophila melanogaster, better known as a fruit fly, during flight while tethered with tungsten wires.
Able to beat its wings 200 times a second, the fruit fly is a marvelous creature. By taking still photographs with exposure times on the order of hundredths of seconds, the mechanics of the wing stroke can be observed. This image is part of a project investigating mutations in the muscle protein myosin that cause familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (a heart muscle disease). By introducing the mutations in the fly, altered muscle performance can be observed, in this case including wing stroke amplitude during flight.
Curated content from the editorial staff at Cosmos Magazine.
Read science facts, not fiction...
There’s never been a more important time to explain the facts, cherish evidence-based knowledge and to showcase the latest scientific, technological and engineering breakthroughs. Cosmos is published by The Royal Institution of Australia, a charity dedicated to connecting people with the world of science. Financial contributions, however big or small, help us provide access to trusted science information at a time when the world needs it most. Please support us by making a donation or purchasing a subscription today.