Sunday, September 17, 2006

My name is HELP


Hi! I am a very young, scared but loving little kitten. My new family found me 3 days ago hiding in a cinder block wall. They finally 'caught' me yesterday and gave me a warm home. I have eaten a little bit of moist food, and lots of water.
There are a lot of feral (wild) kitties around. They have all been ignoring me! There are no other kitties my size around, the nice family taking care of me thinks I have been abandonded. Their neighbor feeds feral kitties, but she was gone for almost a month! So maybe my cat mommy had to abandon me to survive. I need help, can someone let me know of a rescue organization who might take care of me? Or maybe you want to take me forever?
The family taking care of me has been able to pet me and their female cat has been helping to take care of me to. She lives with another kitty and a puppy, so I cannot live here. A link to my picture is below. You can also call Christie at 480-236-2255 if you can help.

Monday, January 31, 2005

Back to school

This semester I am taking some really great courses! I would like to use this blog as a means of getting my thoughts out there (kind of like down on paper) and also a study tool. I will start off by reviewing some basic molecular biology for genetics class. Look for it by tomorrow!!

Sunday, December 12, 2004

A really great primer

I took a class at ASU, entitled Biology and Society. This is a course that is listed as both a -history and philosophy of science- course and a -biology- course. (To those of you at ASU, may I suggest this course with great enthusiasm!) The course covers a number of topics in biology that influence society. One of it's texts is Remaking Eden: How Genetic Engineering and Cloning Will Transform the American Family. The entire text is non-technical in nature and incredibly interesting. Starting on page 207 our author, Lee M. Silver, outlines how recombinations of fertilized eggs can produce offspring with two mothers or two fathers.

When an egg is fertilized with a sperm a chemical reaction occurs that sets the egg into motion. Imagine that prior to this the egg is sleeping and the sperm's entry suddenly awakens the egg. There are a set of chemicals (enzymes) present on sperm that awaken the egg.
(An awake egg can perform all duties necessary for making a new organism.) At this point we have two separate sets of genetic material present in one cell. We can remove the genetic material from mom, or dad, and replace it with a different set from another newly fertilized egg. Now, we have made a new genetic combination, maybe from two moms! Next the genetic material is combined, and the cell divides, and divides and divides...
Please Note
(This is not the method that is described in the article we are reviewing this week.)

Friday, December 10, 2004

Who is Tomohiro Kohno

As promised here are some links, where more information regarding the Mice Without Fathers article can be researched. Happy reading.

Here is the abstract from the actual journal article that was posted. For those of you not in the academic world the importance of being published in a scientific journal is comparable to being chosen to a superhero in the next action film. The old adage that scientists are nerds is true. Most don’t know which guy is Brad Pitt or Ben Afflek, but ask them about the journal for their subject and they can tell you which scientist has the most articles published there. For those interested, this article was published in Nature in May of 2004.

This is the National Geographic Response to the scientific discovery. Which by the way is entitled, “The End of Males?” Please be reassured that while this is a possibility it is of course highly unlikely.

This is the link for Tomohiro Kohno. He is listed in the abstract as the first name. Why do we care whose name is first? Well, once again it comes down to the celebrity of science metaphor. The first name is the primary investigator on a project and hence the one who gets the most notice for the discovery. Sometimes you can see hundreds of names in sequence in an actual journal publication. You should know that those names last on the list are the lowly undergraduates who cleaned glass and fed mice. Here is a link for the American scientist listed as co author on the article by The Scientist online.


Thursday, December 09, 2004

Update

Well, I just realized that only four people have visited my site. However I wanted to make it clear to anyone else who does that I am not a man hater. Both of the articles I mentioned from discover mag. were in relation to men. This is just a coincidence I promise.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

The five W's of the Chosen ONE

This week I have chosen to review and describe an article by Discover magazine. This month's special volume is entitled "The Year in Science: 2004" (for more great news from this magazine visit: http://www.discover.com/. ) Within this collection of 100 stories, choosing an article was actually quite difficult, I felt that at least half of them could be linked back to genetics. My passion overwhelms me I guess.

It came down to two very brief but incredibly interesting and easily researchable notations. The first, number 97, "Rakish Rodents Reformed" (34, Chris Jozefowicz) is in regards to promiscuity in male rodents. Surprisingly changing just one gene the males were altered to be monogamous with their mates. The second, number 52, "Mice Bred Without Fathers" (51, Helen Pearson) is the CHOSEN ONE! This article explains that all things we know and love regarding reproductivity have to be rewritten. Two little female mice were genetically altered to allow them to reproduce (with some help in the lab of course) without the need of a man!

Tomorrow I plan to post links, where you can get more information on both articles. Coming soon will be my informal interpretation of the story.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Day one

This blog has the intention of making all information that has anything to do with genetics freely available to all. There is plenty of information out there of course, however most of the language is very technical, and those in the world without an extensive background in molecular biology and chemistry cannot understand most of it!! So, I have decided to start slow. I will choose one topic of interest each week and interpret it into laymens terms. If this sounds interesting to you, check back soon, and of course you can always reply. If you have any questions regarding me, or genetics in general I would be more than happy to answer them. So, have a nice day!