Testing the Effects of Salep Derived From the Tubers of Orchis mascula, Aloe vera, and Alpha-chymotrypsin on Wound Healing in Drosophila melanogaster Larvae

(1) Wheeler High School, Marietta, Georgia

Aloe vera and alpha-chymotrypsin have been used in previous studies to enhance wound healing. Based on this knowledge, we conducted an experiment to determine whether administering these treatments as well as an herb with similar chemical proponents, namely salep flour, would enhance wound healing in Drosophila melanogaster. We hypothesized that the three treatments would enhance wound healing by decreasing wound size more effectively. We fed D. melanogaster larvae these treatments over a two week period. We then administered a puncture wound using a steel needle at the larva’s dorsal midline. We analyzed the wounds photographically to determine the average percent change of the wound’s perimeter over 6 hours. The results of two of the treatment groups, Salep and Aloe vera, yielded wound sizes small enough to present a significant percent decrease when compared with the wound sizes of the control group. Therefore, our results show support that both Salep and Aloe vera were effective for enhancing wound healing in epithelial cells in D. melanogaster larvae.

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