Thursday, November 13, 2014
The Chaos of Biology
This may have been my first research article, but I’m pretty sure it’s not a good thing to write a paper about an experiment that didn’t work out. After such careful creation and screening of our two mutants, it was pretty sad to see our beta galactosidase assays fail. Also, our first sequencing data was atrocious. We couldn’t even find a sequence alignment with the original Cph8 plasmid, and we had an excessive (to say the least) number of ‘N’ nucleotides. Our western blot looked more like a tie-dye pattern than a protein gel. I’d show a picture but it’s embarrassing. Our hope was renewed when we learned that we’d be testing mutants isolated from an earlier class, but those didn’t work out very well either. This module has taught me to come to terms with the chaos of biology. Sometimes things don’t work, even when we really think they ought to. Making even one small mistake can have huge consequences. The weird data definitely made writing the report pretty awkward, but thank goodness for four-day weekends.
When all is said and done though, it was pretty neat to write a whole research article. At the beginning of this class, I couldn’t even tell you the parts that make one up. This class has definitely furthered my understanding of science.