Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Top ten signs my experiment today probably didn't work

I rarely talk about work on here, so for a change of pace, I will :) I've been trying to characterize how (or if??) two proteins interact with each other using a yeast two hybrid system. Basically, you put tags on the DNA for the two proteins you want to study, then put the DNA into yeast cells. *If* you feed the yeast the right food AND the proteins interact, the yeast turn blue. If they don't interact, the yeast stay white. I'm putting the second set of DNA in now. I'll try and translate into cooking terms...

1. I didn't have enough of one of the DNAs I want to test (I ran out of flour).
2. My buffered lithium acetate was missing the buffer.
3. The carrier DNA stuck together as a blob instead of mixing into the samples (the butter is still in a big chunk in the bottom of the bowl).
4. I ran out of plates (not enough cookie sheets).
5. I'm not sure how long I heat shocked them (I either over or underbaked them).
6. When I scaled back the experiment to accomodate #1 and #4, I forgot one of the controls (oops, forgot the chocolate chips...though I have some of that combo from a previous experiment).
7. H&H were "helping" me with the final step.
8. Four and a half hours of sleep is not enough for me.
9. I'm going on vacation and would like to be done with this before I leave. The more you want it to work, the less likely it is.
10. Most of the time, research just doesn't work!

But you have to be an optimist to be a scientist...and sometimes the "oops" experiments work out better than you expect!

1 comment:

The Rock Star said...

I like 10 the best! ;)