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Category Archive: Laboratory

Apr 02 2014

Bits and Pieces

LabTooLong

I am exhausted! Today at lunch I did a 2.5 mile outdoor jog/walk. The weather was nice and the run went quickly. After that I came back to the office and packed up for my first move in eight years. We’re implementing a new program that requires co-location of team members, so I moved from …

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Mar 26 2014

Goodbye, Dear Samples.

2014-03-26 13.31.54

When in the Course of sample shelf life stability, it becomes necessary for one person to dissolve the emotional bands which have connected her with these samples, and to assume among the powers of industry science, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Finance and of Peer-Reviewed Literature entitle her, a decent …

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Oct 18 2013

Eureka Moments

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not “Eureka” but “That’s funny…” —Isaac Asimov (1920–1992). I had a “Eureka!” moment today. An honest-to-goodness real-all-growed-up-scientist Eureka moment. In my case the particular exclamation wasn’t “that’s funny”, but “NOOOOOOO! What the @%$&*# is that!?” which is a slightly less …

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Sep 24 2013

Caution: Water

IMAG1258

New labels for the water bottles in the lab. You can never be too safe, kids. Just…perhaps no ingesting in very large quantities, okay?  DEIONIZED WATER (DI Water, Pure Water, Dihydrogen Oxide) Target Organs: N/A PRECAUTIONARY MEASURE: GENERALLY CONSIDERED SAFE. Avoid contact with materials which are water reactive. Follow precautionary measures for other materials which …

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Aug 13 2013

Lab Life is Rough

Mine2

Busy lab, limited resources. Everyone wants to use the same equipment. Jeepers. Some days. Image shows the scene from “Finding Nemo” where the crab fends off the seagulls (the ones who yell “MINE! MINE!). Text says: “C’mon guys – I got here FIRST!”. The crab is labeled “me”. The seagulls are labeled “The coworkers, they …

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Jan 03 2013

Ficoll Fun

RBCs in Ficoll

Here’s a cool science photo from the lab: What we’re looking at is whole blood that is separating into its various components. Blood is made up of red blood cells (RBCs), white blood cells (WBCs) and plasma. If fresh, whole blood is left sitting in a tube, the denser RBCs will slowly fall to the …

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Sep 25 2012

6 O’Clock BS: Zen Lab Work

IMAG0462

I love doing protein concentration determinations. There’s something calming about calculating dilutions, pipetting precise volumes, being able to trust the objective evidence of the OD280 readings. … Oh, the lies I tell myself when the work day runs long. Yay! Moar dilutions, moar reps! Blarg. I mean…Oooooohm.

Dec 02 2011

A Sad Day in the Science Classroom

I opened up the Star Tribune to a sad story. From the Star Tribune: Thursday morning, ninth-graders in the second-hour science class at Maple Grove Junior High School had turned their desks toward the science table where teacher Matthew Achor conducted experiments for the class final. The first time the teacher dropped a match into …

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Nov 09 2011

Nerd Trash Talk

I headed right up to the lab when I arrived at work this morning, which is a different pattern than I’ve had over the past several weeks. My most recent project has been a long-term study that I’ve been testing it in the later part of the day just because it’s a simple assay that I can throw on as …

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Oct 21 2011

Lyme Disease – Always Learning.

If you’ve ever been camping or hiking or hunting or had an outdoor pet or gone anywhere near a tree or have a TV or know anyone who fits any of these situations, you’ve probably heard of Lyme Disease. I live in Minnesota, land of forests and lakes, big-ass mosquitos and lots and lots of …

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