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Bugs and Drugs

Nicotine is an addictive drug commonly used by humans that increases blood pressure, heart rate and breathing. Madelin and Ela worked with pill bugs, an organism commonly found in soil, to learn how different amounts of nicotine exposure affects pill bug movement, specifically the distance they travel following exposure.

Intern(s):

Ela Ekincioglu, Madelin Ramos

Mentor(s):

Emine Ozen

Project Period:

2021-2022

Team:

Harlem

Nicotine is an addictive drug commonly used by humans that increases blood pressure, heart rate and breathing. The model organism we used was pill bugs, which are part of the Armadillidiidae family, that live in soil. We decided to work with pill bugs specifically because we found very little research on how any drug substances affect them. Pillbugs don’t have lungs but rather something similar to gills that helps them breathe and absorb moisture. Pillbugs are cool-blooded animals that move relatively slowly, so we wanted to experiment whether they would move more once exposed to nicotine.
Research question: How does the treatment of different amounts of liquid nicotine affect the distance traveled by pill bugs after 8 minutes?
Hypothesis: When Armadillidiidae are exposed to liquid nicotine, they will travel more distance.

This page was created by BioBus Summer 2021 Jr. Scientist William Rhee.

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