Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Gel Electrophoresis

I spent the whole day today extracting DNA, although the box said it will take only 20 minutes to do it, it probably meant someone who is a pro at this. This is my first time extracting DNA. Some argue the traditional method using phenol chloroform method is the best but some said kits with produce a purer DNA. It does not help that I had an Iranian PhD student old enough to be my uncle (hence the urge of my co supervisor to said out loud "Bazli, your uncle is here"). He does not have any basics in molecular work (heloo, I don't either okay) so he is watching me doing the extraction and basically learning as I go. Sometimes I am a bit blurred on what I am doing really, but I had a few days to study (basically banging my head on the table) the extraction system and preparing all the reagents and materials.
Tada! the final stage of the DNA extraction is to confirmed that we actually extracted DNA.

However under the UV light... NADA. ZIP, ZERO!!! The glowing band on the left is just a ladder to determined the size of the DNA my sample was next to it, and no glowing band was present. OH CRAP!!! no bands so basically I extracted nothing. Well at least I know the methodology of this system. Perhaps I need to use fresh tachyzoites extracted from mice to get extraction.

Prof called me today, he said I should get Guinea pigs now and start the congenital model of toxoplasmosis. To make a long scientific story short, I will start sacrificing newborn guinea pigs for the sake of science and humanity. My job is pretty heartless and cruel, which raises a few eye brows at the Microbiology lab. I mean all they deal with is microorganisms. Can you tell me who gets grossed out or sad seeing bacteria dies. I am nervous with Guinea Pigs because these animals tend to get startled easily. I even read that they might died of a heart attack because they were so shocked when handled.

I had the nerve to ask Prof if I could keep one as a pet.

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