Russell's Blog

New. Improved. Stays crunchy in milk.

The cloning blues

Posted by Russell on October 19, 2009 at 8:43 p.m.
I've been doing my first laboratory rotation in Mitch Singer's lab, and trying to learn what people are actually doing when they publish these spiffy experimental results. So far, I've mostly been wrecking things. Fun disasters of the week :
  • Wrecked a DNA extraction by grabbing the wrong Pipetter and putting 300 microliters into a tube instead of 3.
  • Misread an illegible label and used butanol instead of ethanol, destroyed second attempt at the aforementioned DNA extraction.
  • Dropped the wrong tube in the trash, screwed up the third attempt at the aforementioned DNA extraction.
  • Kept a gel on the UV bench too long while trying to chop out little cubes with a razor blade, annihilated all the DNA, and screwed up fourth attempt at aforementioned DNA extraction.
  • The PCR cycler didn't close correctly, and my reaction tubes evaporated; screwing up fifth attempt at aforementioned DNA extraction. (At least this one wasn't my fault.)
I'm now spending the evening in the lab running everything over again, for the sixth time. Yays!

I definitely sticking to informatics -- that part of the rotation is going pretty well. I'm just not cut out for benchwork.

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