Thursday, 20 August 2009

Ciào for now…

First of all I want to apologise for not posting last week- I had suspected Swine Flu and could just about move my little finger, let alone my body…


…numerous Western blots; much pipetting!; many calculations; fluorescent microscopy; lab meetings; FACS; densitometry; image processing; dark room; cell culturing; cell harvesting; centrifugation; protein assays; data processing; report writing and of course, Blogging!

When put like that, it’s not difficult to imagine how much I’ve managed to do during my 8 week placement. And I’ve also managed to get some exciting results which will be further investigated.

All in all, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time working with the Tenovous breast cancer research group in the Welsh School of Pharmacy. The project is completely fascinating and the team of people including my supervisor (Dr. Taylor) and my colleagues- Esther and Charlie, have been a complete pleasure to work with.

Here is a picture of Dr. Kathryn Taylor and myself,

And here is one of Esther (left), me and Charlie (Right)

There are many other people that have helped me during my time here too, and I have many thanks for them also. The placement has been extremely rewarding and hugely beneficial to me. It’s taught me a range of laboratory techniques and enhanced my existing lab skills; my biochemical knowledge has been enhanced; and just as importantly, I have come to realise the importance of key skills such as time management and keeping detailed notes of all procedures done.

I’m certainly feeling more confident for my lab-based research dissertation in my final year which I will be commencing very shortly. And in general my confidence has been boosted in the lab environment.

I’ve really enjoyed bogging too. This is a first for me and I’ve definitely found it a good way to reflect on the weeks as they’ve come and gone, and it has been nice to share my experiences with everyone.

I'd DEFFINATELY recommend doing a placement like this to anyone who is thinking about going into research in the future as its opened my eyes and given me a realistic insight into what a job in this area of science will hold for me. My desire and interest in working in scientific research has been greatly stimulated and I will be applying for PhD projects this year.

I hope you’ve enjoyed every minute you’ve spent reading my blog :p

I’ll probability blog once more in a couple of month’s time to let you know where I am PhD wise.

Until then, Peace out, from your Mad scientist,
Chris :)

Friday, 7 August 2009

Perhaps I'm loosing the plot...

You'll get the title once you've read the blog.
This week has been a pretty similar week to the last so I’ll keep this entry short.

I’ve been doing some Fluorescent microscopy again, to repeat the experiment I did last week, and, Yay! It worked! Same results two weeks running, even after altering some concentrations and using slightly different dyes!

Next week I’m going to be doing some FACS analysis to quantify these results.

When my Mum read my blog last week she told me she could almost see a woman in the picture of my cells, sadly I couldn’t concur…

…however I think I’ve out-done myself or perhaps her this week, so here are some more FLUORESCENT MICROSCOPY pictures of TAMOXIFEN-RESISTANT BREAST CANCER CELLS which happen to look like your more day-to-day things…

...polar bear?
And I thought this one was pretty so I threw it in too...
I hope you enjoyed that, I'm going to get some pictures next week of myself and Dr. Taylor, and perhaps the girls I've been working with if they let me.
Short and sweet like I said. Until next week.