284 | 2D recordings of odor-based navigation in vinegar flies and honey bees

Tools Development and Open Source Neuroscience

Author: Agustin Orozco | Email: agustinorozzco@gmail.com

Agustin Orozco , Mauro Rodriguez , Lautaro Duarte , Agustin Lara , Fernando Locatelli

1° Departamento de Física, Universidad de Buenos Aires
2° Instituto de Fisiología, Biología Molecular y Neurociencias; UBA-CONICET, y Departamento de Fisiología, Biología Molecular y Celular, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales, UBA.

The study of the neurobiology of olfaction is strongly influenced by experiments in a wide variety of animal models, as the physiological and computational mechanisms underlying the detection and encoding of odors are highly conserved. This has driven research in insects that exhibit clear odor-guided behaviors and offer advantages for experimental manipulation and the recording of olfactory circuits. The study of olfactory neurobiology requires methodologies that allow for the measurement and manipulation of elements within the olfactory circuit, as well as the ability to make reliable and quantitative measurements of odor-guided behaviors. In this project, our aim is to design a device that enables the recording of navigation trajectories guided by odors with attractive, neutral, or aversive value in two insects that serve as canonical models for the study of olfactory neurobiology: the vinegar fly Drosophila melanogaster and the honeybee Apis mellifera. To achieve this, we have developed a device based on a compensatory sphere, upon which the animal simulates two-dimensional navigation without actual physical displacements. Two devices were constructed, one adjusted to the size and speed of flies and another for bees. The quantitative analysis of speed and direction of movement has been calibrated based on the positive phototaxis of both species. Currently, we are working on adapting the recording and analysis for olfactory stimuli.