skip to primary navigationskip to content

Working in the Fly Facility

flylab image

How to arrange a Fly Facility induction

Drosophila researchers based in, or visiting, Cambridge are welcome to use the Department of Genetics Fly Facility. However, you will need to complete a Fly Facility induction before you can work in the facility. To arrange for an induction, please contact Simon Collier (, ext. 65124, room 115A). The induction will normally be arranged within 48 hours of a request. Before attending the Induction, please read the following pages carefully:

Also, please familiarize yourself with the areas of the facility you will be working in through the information and links below.

When you have completed your induction, you will be asked if you need to be able to order fly food. If you do, you will need to provide your CRSid.

You will also be added to a Fly Facility mailing list so that you will be kept aware of developments and issues in the facility.

What's in the Fly Facility?

The Fly Lab (room 115)

The Fly Lab has bench space for up to 24 fly workers. Each Fly Station has a dissecting microscope and CO2 source. Two fly stations have microscopes with cameras to capture images. The computers for these cameras require a Genetics department password, although a personal account can be set up for you if you are not a departmental member (please contact ). The set-up with the TrueChrome HDMI Camera is ideal for teaching as the microscope image can be displayed directly on a monitor without the need to use the computer.

The Fly Lab contains four large controlled temperature (CT) rooms that can hold up to 15,000 fly stocks each. There are two CT rooms at 25oC (CT1 and CT4). There are two CT rooms at 18oC (CT2 and CT3). If you need incubator space to culture flies at a different temperature, please let know.

The Fly Lab also has several water baths available for heat-shocking flies, and a fume hood and flammables cabinet if required.

The Microinjection Room (room 115b)

The Microinjection Room (115b) is located within the Fly Lab (115). The room contains the microinjection set-up used for our Microinjection Service. (For more information about our Microinjection Service, please email .) The microinjection set-up is available for use by Drosophila workers in the Genetics department, please contact to arrange to use it. There is a Sutter needle-puller at the back of the main Fly Lab (115). Please let know if you wish to use the needle-puller. This is a sensitive and expensive instrument, so please do not use it if you are not sure what you are doing!

The Microinjection Room also houses a fluorescence dissecting microscope with camera that can be used to screen flies for fluorescent protein expression. The microscope uses a CoolLED pE-300white White Light Fluorescence Illumination System. The CoolLED pE-300white manual is available here. The microscope has filters optimized for visualizing GFP, YFP and Texas Red.

The Cage Room (room 306)

The Cage Room has recently relocated from the basement to the west attic (306). The Cage Room is for growing large populations of flies and making collections of large numbers of embryos. The rooms are kept at 25oC with high humidity and have a 12:12 light:dark cycle. We continuously maintain a large cage of wild-type (Oregon R) flies to allow collection of wild-type embryos. Please contact if you have questions about using the Cage Room.

The Isolation Room (room 307)

The Isolation Room (307) is located in the west attic of the Genetics building and is primarily used to culture and screen quarantined fly stocks. The room contains two fly stations with dissecting microscopes, one with its own CO2 source.

The Isolation Area also has several incubators, not all of which are usually in use for quarantining flies. The spare incubator space is available for Fly workers who need alternative incubation temperatures. Please contact to arrange to use one of these incubators.

The Fly Media Room (room B2)

The Fly Media room (B2) is in the basement and contains a large Joni kettle which can make up to 50 litres of cornmeal food. The Fly Media room is also able to make smaller amounts of alternative fly foods. Fly food is made every weekday and food ordered before midday will normally be available in the afternoon of the following weekday.

The Wash-up Room (room B19)

The wash-up room (B19) is in the basement and is where glass fly tubes and bottles are cleaned and washed before being reused. Our wash-up staff do a fantastic job, but prefer not to be disturbed. Please address any questions/concerns about wash-up to .

Contact Information

Tiny fly

E-mail contacts

Simon Collier (Fly Facility Manager):

General Fly Facility enquiries:

Microinjection enquiries:

Fly food enquiries:

Fly stock requests:


Department of Genetics,
University of Cambridge, Downing Street,
Cambridge CB2 3EH,
United Kingdom

Phone: +44 (0)1223 765124
Fax: +44 (0)1223 333992


The Fly Facility webpages are maintained by Simon Collier. Please contact me ) if you have any problems using the site.