Margaret (pling) wrote,

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First day back at work after a 6 day weekend (universities can be nice to work for sometimes ;) ) and I tried again to set up the experiment I had originally planned to do last Monday ... this time I wasn't hampered by the hangover-from-hell (all Ed's fault, he made me drink the wine, no really) so that wasn't the issue. Just about everything else screwed up though :/ But I got a couple of ideas to try on Monday so that's all good. That stuff is mostly tedious set-up-the-technique stuff, no-one in the group knows how to do it, and there's a certain amount of fiddly stuff to it so making it work from a single line description in a paper is less than easy. We're all setting up slight variants as well (it's one of those things, that once it works it'll be real cool for everyone's work, but getting it to work is a bitch), so a lot of time is spent on conversations that go "Well, I find it makes a difference if I <a>" "Oh? I find that <a> really doesn't help, but <b> does make a slight difference" "Oh really? I'd not tried that, I wonder what it does in my system?". All in all rather frustrating.

But what I set up this afternoon should work *fingers crossed* - I'd got a bunch of RNA samples sat around in the -80°C freezer and just before I went away I did a trial cDNA synthesis of some of them, followed by a GAPDH PCR and I got bands! (That's a good thing, btw.) I'd been having trouble before with contamination of the PCRs and other such things so the samples had been in ethanol for a bit too long, and previous batches I'd tried were clearly too old :/ But the trial run of these was OK, so I did the next 18 samples today, and I run the gel tomorrow to find out if it worked. Hope so, coz that avoids setting up the experiment to collect the samples again. Then I can analyse them (GAPDH is a housekeeping gene so the GAPDH PCR just shows that there's cDNA there in the end and that the cells were alive when I harvested them), then if it's interesting I get to set up the experiments again, but at least then I'm looking for confirmation of a result rather than fishing in the dark ;)

Came home this evening and cooked tuna lasagne - orginally intended to have it yesterday, as the preparation time is close to 2 hours, but then we decided to have an Indian takeaway instead as a treat for the last day of our holiday. It was worth the long cooking time, as always, but it does make for an awfully late dinner even if I do start cooking immediately when I get in.
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