In my methods project, I constructed a complete multi-panel scientific figure of finding an evidence of phytophagy. In my project, I constructed a complete figure that showed care and attention to detail. My title was appropriate for the manuscript. I have learned to keep paragraph content aligned with my topic sentence, to avoid hypotheticals, and to use consistent terminology. Such skills will help me write my honors thesis this coming semester.
I thought that the perfect paragraph would be graded based on my grammar. For this reason, I subscribed for a semester-long Grammarly website. I did not realize that my classmates would comment on my writing. Their comments helped me learn basic grammar rules and helped me improve my writing. I think that I got better each week, I posted my perfect paragraphs. At first, it was a bit difficult correcting my drafts and then posting my perfect paragraph. However, with a little bit of practice each week, I have gained the necessary skills to effectively write every day and fix my grammar mistakes. Such skills will be beneficial in the future, such as graduate school.
Before writing the drafts, I had not realized that writing every day would have been beneficial. More often I wrote I got better at transferring my thoughts into my writing. I wrote about things when being impressed by something, when events inspired me and I knew that I wanted to remember them or analyze them. It so happened that it’s easier for me to analyze when I write down thoughts, rather than keeping them in my head. Although I do not plan to write every day, the draft assignments have helped me improve my writing thought process. Such skills will be beneficial in the future, such as graduate school.
People who have RP4 goes through unique challenges that result from their vision loss. In patients with RP, the disease usually starts in childhood when patients find that their eyesight takes a long time to adjust to the dark. This is followed by eventual loss of night vision altogether, which the patients often describe as though they have walked into a dark room with sunglasses on. This is followed by the loss of peripheral vision, where the field of vision becomes narrower and narrower until complete blindness. Despite the devastating effect of this disease on the quality of life in patients, RP is not fatal, and as a result, the lifespan of those who suffer from the disease is not affected. People who have RP generally know that they may also have RP because their family members have RP. Because RP is a degenerative disorder, people with RP find it harder to accept and adjust to being blind than people who were born blind. However, patients of RP also tend to adjust better than people who lose their sight suddenly as they have time to prepare for the eventual sight loss. Some of the adjustments that come with the loss of sight are, learning to use a walking stick and braille. Other challenges that are posed by the disease are there is a need for adjustment in jobs and loss of ability to drive. However, despite these challenges and adjustments, people who have advanced RP also have said that the disease was not as bad as they thought and that even though they are blind, they are still able to participate in society, which was not something that they expected.
The Perfect Paragraphs were easier to do since it was just improving a draft. However, the comments were slightly time consuming as sometimes people did not have improvements to make or sometimes the posts would have reached its limit for comments. The paragraphs helped me refine my writing further and realize that even though I am trying to proofread as I write, there are always corrections to be made if it is read once more at the end. The methods project was very different from all project reports I have written. I had never paid so much attention to detail as much as I had for this project. I personally had a great time doing a write up on it. It was a very unique way of understanding the whole idea of replication as well. I also found the approach for finding differences very interesting – making inferences for the differences rather than finding faults.
I can't say I didn't enjoy the poster making the process. Something about having a graphic to make was calming. I'm good at giving presentations, unlike writing, so that fueled my concentration and willingness to make the poster. I think that I actually did quite well on this particular project. Especially since I was able to look it over and make sure nothing was missing and those were things that I can actually check for unlike things like wordiness where I think I know what to check for, but the paragraph ends up getting wordy anyway.
For the drafts that the class was asked to post every week, it wasn’t as hard to do as I thought it would be possible because I had so many classes that required me to write this semester. When I didn’t really have any classes I usually wrote about the experience of being in a lab and how it was different from the classroom and how procedures were done in different settings. I think that this sort of forced me to write relatively consistently, even though that wasn’t every day. I think I can handle it if it was every week but I don’t think I can do it well if it was every day. I also think that if I didn’t have a class that required me to write every week, I would do it because of this, it would be a good exercise, especially since I think that the key to being good is not the quality but the quantity. I personally thought that having to do drafts was a good idea to have everyone write more in a stress-free environment was a pretty good idea and I enjoyed it, especially because it was something that I had to be doing anyway.
I think that the biggest problem is that I was kind of vague about the project and I tested the project constantly and switched the project method constantly, so it made the group members a bit difficult to keep up what is actually happening. Of course, I also did a run-through of the project to make sure that it is actually feasible which it was, but it took me 8 hours to do so, and that was without the research. I kind of regretted this because I just wasted 8 hours on things that wouldn't be graded on when I could have been working on grammar, which was something that needed desperate attention. I think that this project that I did the worst one, especially since I was so burned out by the end, I forgot to do a final run-through of editing process, and while both of my group members told me that they have done a run-through by themselves, and this is going to sound terrible, I don't necessarily trust them to get things done.
The third project went surprisingly alright. It, however, started terrible, with group members going missing at a crucial time point when data needed to be gathered. I was actually quite angry at this because group members have failed to show up before and I think at least an apology was warranted, as the plan went off-course and other people's time was wasted, but I never got any, which was frustrating, because it just shows how much the group members only care about themselves. After the Thanksgiving break was when the real hell started. First, no one answers my emails. Then my concerns about who is going to work on what has brushed aside, and only when I absolutely refused to do more work at the night before when the poster was supposed to be printed at around 1 am everyone got to work. Most of the things that were needed for the poster was done at 10 am. We ended up meeting to print the poster at 6\.
The negative side of this is that it's time-consuming, and combined with my procrastination I usually end up only able to revise one or two times before handing it in. When I first did the first draft of the method section, it was the actual first draft, so it was not the best it could be and while I understand that the points were taken off, I wish I'd have known that I would not be allowed to edit after. I don't actually remember much about this project because it was an individual project, and while I was really frustrated, it was mostly about my own inability to write well. I know where I have problems with, and I try to make sure that I get better, but I also can't improve my writing significantly in only a few short months. I know that it's important, which is why it's so frustrating that I am not able to. Knowing that I'm not good at writing, and knowing that that will hurt me grade-wise, I probably spent more time catatonically awake at night than working on the actual project. But if I'm honest, I think this might the best project that I did for this course. It was both simple and the writing was at least somewhat more organized than the others.
With the proposal project, I began working with two other classmates on this project. I think that the most frustrating thing wasn't that the classmates were bad at writing, but that we had some trouble lining up our work habits together. I tend to procrastinate, but I also tend to get at least the first draft done in advance and then wait a few days then redo them and hand them in literally at the last minute. I think the classmates that I worked with like to do things last minute this did have some trouble with the scheduling but at least for this project, it mostly worked out.
This year, I worked on a total of three projects for writing in biology class. These projects included methods project, where I was asked to create a method, and someone else would follow it, and I would be then asked to analyze the results and why there were differences. The second project that Iworked on was the proposal project, where were were asked to propose a project that can be done in the class. The third project was the poster project, where we would follow the method proposed by the proposal to make a poster around the result. Throughout the year, I was asked to write some drafts every week write a perfect paragraph every week and write a reflection essay at the end of semester In the end, I think that in these three projects, method, proposal poster, drafts, perfect paragraph and reflection I did learn many things, however, I also face some unique challenges such as working in a group, dealing with my own mental health, and learning to ask for help.
For the method project, because the project was done individually, the biggest challenge that I faced was my own problems, namely my less than a stable mental state, my insecurities with writing, and my tendencies to mess up the first draft significantly. When I first started the project, the biggest thing that I thought was less what place to put the camera or where to take it, but how can I make it so that the result would be the most similar and I approached it from there I also did write the method section of the project and hand it in, but it was somewhat incomplete. This was a major problem because usually when I first submit a draft, as most professors can tell, it is terrible. I usually generally rewrite for every single draft. While this is time-consuming, by rewriting it, the paragraph structure would sound less forced and more natural compared to just being edited part by part.
The result indicates that because the experiment was done in vivo, the results of the experiment suggest a high chance that the method would work in an organism as long as the two organisms are similar. In the third experiment that was done the ONL thickness in electroporated eyes and the non electroporated eyes were assessed through histological analysis. The result of this experiment indicated that the retina is able to undergo phototransduction. However, the researchers also observed that there was damage to the retina from the electroporation treatment. The results suggest that the treatment works in restoring vision, However, electroporation is not a viable method for use on humans in rescuing vision. The fourth experiment tested the efficiency of using AAV mediated delivery by injecting the virus with therapy that was used in previous experiments and indel frequency and TIDE analysis was done to evaluate the efficiency of this delivery method. Using this delivery method, all retinal cell types were targeted but to a differing extent. The P23H mutation had a moderate level of cleavage while wt was unaffected the P23H also had a 5 times higher amount of indel compared to wt. This indicates that the viral delivery of the treatment was as effective as electroporation and usable for human trials. In the fifth experiment that was done the NGS analysis of the edited retina was performed through a sequencing analysis. The result is that plus one and plus two insertions was the most common mutation which caused a deletion codon, indicating that it would be unlikely that there would be an inframe mutation. This indicates that the treatment method is highly selective and is effective at the silencing of the mutated protein.
In the sixth experiment, Human cells were treated with the therapy to induce mutations into the cells using sgRNA-hWT and hMUT. The results show that both guides showed different cleavage efficiency in different analysis and there was a high specificity in targeting the complementary genes. In addition, because most of the indel inframe mutation was very low there was a higher chance that the mutation would have no effect on the gene. Because of this result, there is a high chance that this method of delivery would also work well in the human retina. This paper allows the field of disease research to move forward by showing a method of treatment that has worked in the human cells and mice cells this would mean that this treatment system and the delivery combination is likely to work in the human eye and that the treatment can be moved into clinical trials.
While retinitis pigmentosa has unique genetics, protein structure, and tissue behavior that result in unique challenges for both treatment providers and patients, there have also been advances that are developing to solve the problem of the illness. However, there will be a long time until a cure is found. Because of this, funding and continuation of research will be crucial.