Flies in space

1,800 fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) will travel to the International Space Station tomorrow so that the impacts of weightlessness on the heart can be studied. Living in near zero-gravity conditions is known to have a detrimental effect on the cardiovascular system, and fruit flies share 75% of disease-causing genes with humans. Eggs and parents who will lay eggs, will spend a month in space, enabling researchers from the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute in La Jolla, California, to study flies that have spent their entire life in an almost zero-gravity environment. To find out more go to Fruit Flies Journey to International Space Station to Study Effects of Zero Gravity on the Heart.