Wednesday, May 02, 2007

My Own Small Way of Sticking it to the Republicans

Yesterday I was doing some experiments for a collaborator. The idea was to see if our unique measurement was sensitive enough to detect cells loaded with magnetic nanoparticles. We are talking about a handful of teeny tiny particles in just a handful of cells. Can our instrument tell which cells have nanoparticles and which don't? The uptake of nanoparticles by cells is very important for things like targeted drug delivery and hyperthermia. That was the experiment yesterday in between cat stuff which is another long story still unfolding.

After the experiment was done (the results haven't been analyzed) I asked the grad student who brought the cells over what type of cells they were. She told me they were human embryonic stem cells. I was flabbergasted. Stem cells were something I had just read about in popular science magazines and amidst political debates. I know more about them than the average citizen but not more than many scientists. She must have seen the look of surprise on my face and got very defensive.

"Shoot. Did I need to discuss this with you? Are you one of those people that is going to have issues with this?"

"No! I think it's awesome!"

I did stem cell research yesterday. Ha!

6 comments:

Scott said...

Thank goodness someone is.

Don't ever confuse me with a conservative religious nut case. I totally believe in studying human stem cells in order to further the cause of fighting things like cancer and paralysis. You know, because stem cells are human, and of course, so are we. It only stands to reason, right?

I wouldn't want to purposely harvest them like some scene in the Matrix, but they are around, so why not use them?

Christopher said...

That's my girl!

lefty_grrrl said...

You are going to hell you liberal heathen. And that's why I like you so much.

magnetbabe said...

scott-
Don't worry, I mostly think of you as libertarian which up until 6 1/2 years ago wasn't very mainstream. Then when the neo-con movement started people like you (and my husband) needed a different label. And the fact that a lot of people think like you and think about boundaries and not just make blanket assumptions about science means that maybe us scientists can be trusted after all.

christopher-
Thanks dad! (I got your email) Ever since I was forced to change my blogspot account to a google-supported account it's been doing that. It wasn't by choice.

lefty-
Great! I'll see you there!

e.b. said...

That is so kick ass. I don't accidentally do stem cell research at my job. So awesome!

Gram said...

Christopher: YOU MEAN THAT'S OUR GIRL! DON"T YOU JUST LOVE HER?