Lab and Labradoodles
With our ten source annotated bibliography completed, everyone here in the lab has taken our first tentative steps towards cultivating a thesis-worthy bibliography and body of knowledge.
Mel gave an excellent journal club presentation on the formation of otiliths in Zebrafishs’ inner ears – she even included some awesome videos of otilith formation and cilia in motion!
Check the videos out here! (Movie 3 is my personal favorite).
Going for Yolk
I have continued my efforts to learn how to microinject zebrafish embryos – Mel and I started out Week 1 and 2 using food coloring instead of (expensive!) morpholino. On Thursday, I finally headed into the lab, ready to inject the real thing. This was it. No more injecting glorified water. I pulled my needles, loaded up the control morpholino, and prepared my needle stand. Everything was perfect. Too perfect? After a morning of injecting, I packed up my things and headed to class, excited to come back that afternoon and find out how many embryos I had successfully injected. After a quick lesson on detecting fluorescence, I was ready to see how many blastoderms fluoresced with the bright red light of success. The results were in. After checking if the microscope was indeed on (it was), I accepted the fact that I had successful injected a grand total of 6 out of 80 embryos. I was a little disappointed, but heartened by the fact that I have gone from “stick them with the pointy end” to feeling comfortable at least quasi-injecting a hundred embryos in one sitting – I’m looking forward to trouble shooting some more in the coming weeks, and I can’t wait to hit an 80% success rate and begin gathering data!
Breaking Out of Our Chorions
Everyone else has a lot on their petri dishes as well. Mel has continued to practice fixing samples and microinjecting, and finishing up training on the confocal. Rachel has been refining her PCR protocol, and Gwen has been running Western Blots. This Thursday we had a full house, with all of us practicing our respective techniques. We had a special (part) lab(rador) member join us to provide some much needed puppy-time, Larissa’s 10-week old Labradoodle puppy Sadie. Hopefully we’ll be seeing more of her soon!