Date of Award

Spring 1988

Document Type



Life & Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

John Addis

Second Advisor

William Wood

Third Advisor

John Christenson


With regard to cadmium, the most resistant and sensitive strains of Drosophila are v:bw and Austin, respectively. Both strains exhibited the ability to increase their resistance upon exposure to cadmium in their growth media. Crosses of the two strains with each other produced offspring of intermediate resistance but the offspring of reciprocal crosses were not identical in resistance. Crosses of the resistant strain Austin, and another resistant strain, Ed's A", produced a fly which is 2-3 times as resistant as either parent. The biochemical differences between the resistant and sensitive strains were evaluated by measuring the amount of cadmium binding proteins in flies that were exposed to Cd-containing media for their entire development or for only 2 or 4 days as adults. Since in neither case were significant differences in the rate or total production of cadmium binding proteins found, it seems clear that some factor other than the cadmium binding substance is responsible for the difference between the sensitive and resistant strains.