New Latin, genus name, from Greek drosos dew + New Latin -phila, feminine of -philus -phil
First Known Use: circa 1829
noun\drō-ˈsäf-ə-lə, drə-\(Medical Dictionary)
Medical Definition of DROSOPHILA
capitalized: a genus of small dipteran flies that include many (as D. melanogaster) extensively used in genetic research
: any fly of the genus Drosophila
Any member of about 1,000 species in the dipteran genus Drosophila, commonly known as fruit flies but also called vinegar flies. Some species, particularly D. melanogaster, are used extensively in laboratories for experiments on genetics and evolution because they are easy to raise and have a short life cycle (less than two weeks at room temperature). More data have been collected concerning the genetics of Drosophila than for any other animal. In the wild, its larvae live in rotting or damaged fruits or in fungi or fleshy flowers.