Upper Schoolers take part in a variety of clubs that are student-led and designed. The Neurology Club recently conducted a medical experiment using RoboRoach kits. That's right; they were handling cockroaches just for fun!
Backyardbrains.com explains: "You will learn about the anatomy and nervous system of a cockroach. You will also learn the proper surgery and husbandry techniques for experiments on insects. After the surgery, you will then use your RoboRoach circuit to briefly influence the cockroaches movements by microstimulation, and you will observe the subsequent adaptation of the cockroach in response to the microstimulation."
Club sponsor Dr. Neal Fox helped the students anesthetize the cockroaches in an ice bath. They can "stay under" for about an hour with this method and feel no pain through the procedure. Students then use surgical tools to attach a battery and implant electrodes that will allow the students to direct the insects' antennae after a two-day healing process for the cyborg roaches. Dr. Fox explained that the experiment doesn't hurt the insects and that they will live out their average life spans in his lab aquariums--he told the students that they could visit in two years to see their patients again.