Prior to the methods project, I have never had an assignment where we were to write the way we did. It was tough at first to give direction in my methods project without telling the reader what I actually did to get the result I did. With practice in writing my drafts, I began to find the methods project running smoothly. Although there was a lot of out of class work to do, the project was very interesting to see how well I could follow someone’s methods to recreate a multi-panel scientific panel I have never seen before. Surprisingly, the end result for most of the classes replicate figure looked very close to the original. There were plenty of differences in each replicate, but for the most part, most replicates looked similar to the original. This meant that I was able to write in a way that others were able to understand and follow. The methods project allowed me to practice writing a methods section in the future for a scientific paper.
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At first, I did not know what to write my perfect paragraphs about. I did not feel like I was improving my writing at first when I began to write these perfect paragraphs. I felt like I was just writing to get the assignment done. About a third into the semester, I changed my mindset about what I would write about and how well I wrote these paragraphs. I focused more on spelling, grammar and the actual construct of the paragraph to make it the best I could. This allowed my classmates to carefully read these paragraphs and offer constructive criticism for me to work on in my next perfect paragraph. I had never written like this before taking this class. This class was an eye opener in to how to properly write in science. The total effect this part of the class had on me was to make sure I write everything I write with no spelling and grammar errors.
Before beginning to write the daily drafts, I thought to myself that writing for 30 minutes a day is not long at all. However, soon after the semester began, I found myself slacking on writing my daily drafts. Soon after, I began to designate a time each day to spend 30 minutes writing. After writing a few of these drafts, I thought it was very interesting as it allowed us to write about almost anything I want. I found myself looking up articles about daily news in science, reading them, and writing a short summary about them. There were thousands of articles to choose from and I picked the ones that I thought were interesting. The good thing about this is that I enjoyed what I was reading so I can write about it a lot easier. Writing these drafts meant that I was improving the way I write and allowed me to understand scientific articles. Throughout the semester, these blog drafts had an effect on the way I was writing in science later on in the semester.
New research has been done to show that killer whale grandmothers who no longer can reproduce increased the survival rate of their grand-offspring. This may be due to the fact that these killer whale grandmothers have more time to focus on their grand-offspring if they do not have offspring themselves to take care for. Research shows that female killer whales that are no longer reproducing provide an important leadership role. Male killer whales often have a shorter life expectancy, with many not living beyond 30 years. On the other hand, female killer whales don't stop reproducing until they're in their 30s-40s and can live decades after that as well. The findings from this research helps us better understand the factors that are driving the reproductive success of the whales.
A study done by researchers at the University of Michigan show that some oxidative stress at a young age can actually lead to a longer life. Oxidative stress occurs when cells produce more oxidants than they can deal with. Studying C. elegans, researchers were able to determine that worms that produced more oxidants during development lived longer than worms that did not produce as much oxidants during development. Of course, there are other factors that can aslo determine ones life expectancy. Genetics and enviornment are two factors that can affect lifespan. If your parents live a long life, the offspring will have a good chance of living a long life as well. Experiencing stress at a young age may make you better in fighting stress later on in life when you encounter it again. Since stress and age-related diseases are closely connected, scientists are looking into whether early exposure to stress in life have an affect on the predisposition for age-related diseases. Some of these diseases include Alzheimer's and dementia. In a next study, researchers want to look at what changes during development in worms that experience stress at a young age make them have a longer life expectancy.
A new study done by researchers at the University of Sussex in Brighton, UK shows that dogs are able to recognize other dogs from their barks. The researchers were able to see that dogs are able to detect the differences in words that had a slightly different vowel sound due to different accents in the voices and the age of the person calling them. By the way the dogs had putched their ears forward or move towards the speaker when hearing a certain sound was how the researchers were able to tell that the dogs were able to detect the difference. Another finding these researchers were able to discover was that dogs recognize words irrespective of the speaker. The scientists cannot show that dogs actually understand the words we tell them, but are certaintly listening to what we say.
Hundreds of different cell types in the human body are formed during embryonic development. These fully formed cells are derived from just a few identical stem cells. Researchers from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Freiburg have now deciphered a control mechanism in these stem cells that decide what kind of cells they turn into. They found that there are different genes for each cell type and the amount of gene expression for those genes in stem cells determine what kind of cells they will turn into. The results of the study are a crucial step in understanding the mechanisms of how stem cells develop into different types of cells during embryonic development.
A new study done by researchers at Colombia University has identified serotonin as the chemical that triggers the body's startle response in fruit flies. This study shows that when a fruit fly is starlted with unexpected changes to its surroundings, levels of serotonin rise and this helps to stop the fly in its tracks. Since serotonin also exists in people, the results in this study may be a clue as to what happens inside our body with the serotinin levels when we become startled. Serotonin is closely associated with mood and emotion, but more recently, it has been shown to affect the speed of animals movement. The researchers found that serotonin levels in walking fruit flies varied when experiencing additional factors, such as different temperatures, walking upside down, and walking while hungry. Researchers found the biggest significant changes in serotonin levels when a sudden change to the fruit fly's environment occured, or when they were startled.
Unfortunately, a broken wing can be deadly for a bird since it won't be able to fly anymore. Luckily, researchers were able to develop a treatment for broken bird wings using the bones of sheep and dogs. The treatment included an insertion of sharp bone pins into the bone breaks. Dog bones came from dogs that were euthanized due to illness or injury. The birds that received this kind of treatment to their broken wings flew flawlessly, as reported by the researchers. Other treatments included insertions of metal pins to heal the bones but this caused the animals' wings to be weighed down since bird wing bones are hollow. Further advances in this research can make pins and other impants made from animal bones a useful technique in treating animals with wing bone damage.
The Namib Desert beetle from southwestern Africa harvests its water from fog. The beetle lets drops of fog accumulate on his body and drip down his wing case into his mouth. There are a few factors needed for the beetle to be able to catch these droplets on their body. If the surface of the body was lubricated, water droplets were less likely to stick. Texture of the body surface also plays a role in catching these droplets. With this knowledge researchers are trying to figure out ways to refill empty bottles with water from the air, just like these beetles do. First, researchers have to manipulate the properties the beetle has to be able to do this. With these materials, this would be how researchers would be able to design a water collection device that could catch water from the wind.