I am convinced that research is an instrument of t…

I am convinced that research is an instrument of the devil. Ok, not really, but let me give you a little background info.

I’ve pretty much known all my life that research wasn’t for me. I just don’t have the attention span and patience to deal with it. But when my school said that the NIH gave them a grant and they need some students to do research for $4,000, I didn’t complain. Yes it might sound bad, but $4,000 is the most I’ve gotten in any summer. So I’m here at the University of Cincinnati, working at the prestigious Vontz Center. Basically we are researching the apoptotic genes, BIM, DFF-45, and EndoG. All these genes play integral roles in the process of apoptosis. We are knocking these genes out of mice, inducing seizures in them by injecting them with kanic acid, perfusing their brains, slicing their brains in a cryostat, and then Nissel staining them to look for lesions (indicating apoptosis or cell death). All this is pretty cool, the problem is that I guess I had some fantasy that when you do research, everything was supposed to work out. Apparently that is not the case. We can’t find any lesions in the mice brains, even in the control group. So basically, I have absolutely no data, and my presentation is in 2 ½ weeks.

So with this in mind; I was sitting in my lab today, looking out the window at the University Hospital. Drool practically dribbled down my mouth as I thought about shadowing the trauma surgeon again. I’m supposed to be in the lab from 9 to 5. I basically did nothing from 9 to 11 except surf the internet, and write my first entry to PremedDiary.com. At 12 I had a lunch with Dr. Lieberman who heads the SRS (Summer Research Scholars) program I’m in. We had to present our introduction for our research project to him, so he could make sure that we were on track. After that long meeting was done, I went back to the lab, and surfed the internet some more. Another girl who is in the SURF program (another research program) asked me to cover her on Saturday. So I learned what I had to do (it was actually pretty cool; I had to change the media and count the # of mouse embryonic fibroblast cells). After my short training session, I tried to look at the little data I did have and salvage something. I got a headache from just looking at the mess and left the lab (I have a lot of freedom here as you can tell).

In my room I looked at myself in the mirror and felt fat. So I did a couple of sit ups and chilled for awhile. Then I figured that some shadowing would make me feel better so I walked to the ER, just to find out that it was the slowest night in history. So, now I’m in the medical school library, writing this bloody diary. I’m sorry if I sound cynical; I just had a depressing and long day. The trauma surgeon I’m shadowing loaned me a trauma pager, so that if I ever saw something I thought would be interesting, I could run over to the ER to see whats up. So I’m here, just waiting for something interesting to happen. Well, that’s my long and boring day. Post some really good comments or questions to cheer me up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *