Climbing assay to study behavioral deficits in Alzheimer’s disease

Climbing assay to study behavioral deficits in Alzheimer’s disease



Aydan Romeo Wilson


Presentation: 1:15-2:30, Kennedy Union Ballroom



Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that manifests as profound loss of neuronal tissue and high levels of stress and cell death. Patients with AD present with memory problems, motor dysfunction, and the eventual loss of the ability to perform everyday tasks. While there are some medicines that can alleviate the symptoms, there is no cure for AD. AD is characterized by high accumulation of amyloid-beta-42 (Aβ42) that forms layer on the brain as plaques and thus affecting cell function. In our lab, we utilize the Drosophila model to investigate how AD progression affects behavior. We have previously established and validated an AD model where misexpression of the human Aβ42 in the differentiating neurons (GMR>Aβ42) results in progressive neurodegeneration and cell death. We have performed climbing assay (a behavioral assay) as a functional readout of neurodegeneration. The climbing assay measures the ability of flies to climb up ten centimeters on the inside of a test tube within a predetermined duration. For the climbing assays, we have modelled AD in the brain using a mushroom-body specific Gal4 driver (Ok>Aβ42). In this poster, we have presented our results from climbing assays performed at different time points. We demonstrate that the AD flies (Ok>Aβ42) have significantly lesser climbing ability when compared to the wild-type controls (Ok-Gal4).

Publication Date


Project Designation

Independent Research

Primary Advisor

Amit Singh

Primary Advisor's Department



Stander Symposium, College of Arts and Sciences

Climbing assay to study behavioral deficits in Alzheimer’s disease