Skip to main content

Posts

Seriously, why do we still use mice in labs?

I was planning on posting a new blog post on new CRISPR results, then I realised 2 keywords in the title: this has been successful in mice . Almost every piece of research that I have posted on this blog has been either tested in mice  or its been successful in mice . Image [1] This got me thinking, why do we still use mice to test everything on? So many new drugs and other therapies have proven to be successful in mice, but when applied to humans, they weren't successful at all.  If you type into Google Scholar in mice, app 3,960,000 results come up. So clearly mice are incredibly important for scientific research if so much has been published on them. The well-known reasons ... Small size Easy to house and look after Adapt to new surroundings easily Have a short lifespan (2-3 years), therefore we can study generations of mice in a short period of time Inexpensive and can be bought in large quantities Can be bred specifically for research (medical trials requ

Reversing organ damage with a single touch...

A team of researchers led by Daniel Gallego-Perez have created a novel therapy which has proved 98% success in reversing organ damage with just a single touch at Ohio State University.  How? The researchers created a new technique called Tissue Nanotransfection - TNT for short.  TNT uses a specific nanochip technology which can repair/replace injured organs, blood vessels and nerve cells.  This is a form of regenerative medicine; the branch of medicine whereby methods are created to regrow, repair or replace damaged or diseased cells, organs or tissues. In this technique, TNT has been successful in converting skin cells into vascular cells (those which carry blood around the body). Published in the journal: Nature Nanotechnology , the research promises to replace damaged cells without any other invasive technique or any immunosuppression as the nanochip technology keeps the cells in the body under immune surveillance. To work its magic, the nanochip is first loaded

ONE PARAGRAPH ON CANDY CANE SUPERCAPACITORS | ONE PARAGRAPH SCIENCE

Okay, I'm going to state it here first, there are no candy canes involved in the science behind these supercapacitors, it only looks like a candy cane. Scientists at QMUL have found a way to make the charging of phones and other devices much, much faster, with better capacities, more flexible and lasting performance. Current technologies don't tick all of the boxes that have just been listed, so a better solution is needed; that's where supercapacitors come in. Supercapacitors are mainly used to power electric and hybrid cars but they're slowly making their way into other technologies because of their ability to store more energy than the state-of-the-art battery. Supercapacitors are made up of two conducting plates, separated by a non-conducting material which can store more charge at a given voltage. The researchers at QMUL made a prototype of a candy-cane-shaped polymer supercapacitor where the nanostructures used to create the supercapacitor are interweaved with

Coral reefs are not dead... Yet.

I thought I would write something different on my blog anniversary and sort of go back to my chemistry roots and the reason why I did my third-year research project ... to find a way to prevent the exploitation of coral.  Albeit this blog post will be discussing the degradation of coral reefs and how we are very close to losing the beautiful coral structures under the sea.  Coral reefs are undergoing severe bleaching. This has been reported over several years, not just in 2017. Starting from 1998, reports started to talk about coral bleaching, increasing in severity in 2010 and reaching its highest degree in 2017. Corals, which build reefs, are made up of hundreds of thousands of polyps, living in colonies. These polyps build a skeleton made of calcium carbonate in layers, where the polyps live on top (visible to the naked eye if you're close enough) and the coral reef lives on top of old coral reefs a.k.a limestone.   But coral cannot grow or flourish on their ow

I've been blogging for 3 years!

My journey on this blog is now three years old! 🎉 It's been three years since I cut my route in academia and diverted it to science communication and I do not regret my decision one bit, because I'm enjoying every step of it and I'm doing what I love and it's brought me opportunities I wouldn't have experienced had I not started my blog. I remember I was so anxious when I  published my first blog post, were people going to like it? Were they going to hate it? Would I get a mountain of hate all over my blog and social media? When actually the science community, particularly on Twitter and Instagram, has been so welcoming and supportive throughout the years. What made me change my mind? I've always had a passion for journalism - in any form - and if I wasn't very introverted when I was a teenager, I would have gone for a career in journalism and left science behind. In one of my internships, I interned in a research and marketing company who was r

How I ended up leaving the laboratory and moving into medical communications

This blog post was my entry for the Tipbox/Abcam science writing competition (2017), although I didn't win, I'm glad I took part in the competition. Let me know your opinions on my post below in the comments. :) My love for science started when I was very young. I know that at first, I remember that I aspired to grow up to become an astronaut. My passion for space and space travel then turned into a love for archaeology and I wanted to become an archaeologist, taking my dad with me to “archaeological digs” at the museum. By the time I got to my GCSE's and A-levels I had decided that I wanted to become a pharmacist. So I interned at a local pharmacy so that I could experience what my future career would be like - it was then I realised I just couldn't spend my life dispensing medicine (no offence to all the pharmacists out there!) I just felt like I wanted to do something different. UCAS application time was imminent and I had to pick a course I wanted to s

Designing for the future: trends we need to consider now (within science)

“This blog post is a part of Design Blogger Competition organized by CGTrader” Art and science, although they seem like two separate entities, are linked together with a special bond that connects them together (pun intended).  Designers and scientists complete each other’s work, for example, scientists need to collaborate with designers because they need their skills to help them visualise data and enticing methods of communicating science. Therefore, each entity completes the other. During my experience in the medical communications field, a design was an essential part of our final products. Accompanying the medical writers, designers and artists collaborated with our scientific team to create elaborate sci-art which complements the PowerPoint slides or the infographic or a video-visual of a reaction or a function in the body.    One of the best visuals I have seen was an elaborate PowerPoint slide showing the connection between diabetes and its effect on ca