Basking in the glow....
0 comment Wednesday, April 9, 2014 |
Yeah, all that stuff I said about not being motivated by fame and fortune in my first ambivalence post? Fuck it, I'm on the DrugMonkey blog! I'm famous! Just kidding really. Maybe a little serious though. Thanks PhysioProf!Anyway, I love that this has kicked off a trend of sharing our "thrill of victory/discovery" moments. You know, those moments that are like crack. That high is so great, that we keep coming back for more abuse just to get another hit.Unfortunately these moments are few and far between, so it's really nice to get a vicarious hit through other people's stories. Nat of The Junction Potential shares his here, and PhysioProf's is in the DrugMonkey post, along with other stories in the comments.Oh go on then, now that I'm famous I'm sure you're just dying to know so I'll tell you mine:Deep in the depths of third-year-grad-student-with-not-a-shred-of-data despair, I was trying to make several transgenic mice. In my lab we do the whole process ourselves. Engineering and cloning the transgene construct, purifying the DNA for injection, harvesting embryos, pronuclear injection, embryo transfer, subsequent screening of founders - the whole friggin' thing. It's quite an undertaking and there are a lot of skills to master and I was stuck (turns out later I wasn't, but thought I was due to some bad info from my advisor). I'd been trying and trying and couldn't get any founders. My advisor was breathing down my neck and asking why I couldn't get it done (yeah, thanks dude for your *ahem* wrong protocol, which of course I didn't know was wrong at the time) and I was thusly questioning my ability and reasons for being a scientist, and maybe also my reason for being.I decided to give it one more go and then if it didn't work (again!), admit defeat and reconsider whether I wanted to stick with the PhD. So I did one more round of pronuclear injections with some modification to the protocol, got a few more litters of potential founders, prepped DNA for genotyping, and ran the PCR, fully expecting another big fat nothing.To my surprise, when I looked at the gel I had five (5!) bands that indicated the mice were carrying the transgene. Oh. My. God.I have founders!IhavefoundersIhavefoundersIhavefoundersIhavefoundersIhavefounders!!!!1!11!!Eleventy!!!1!!1!1!!Of course I was thrilled and wanted to tell everyone, but of course it was like stupid o'clock (why do these things always happen at night?). So instead I printed out a picture of the gel and scrawled across the top with a Sharpie "Oh FUCK yeah!"Then I made three photocopies: one for the lab notebook, one to hang over my desk, and one to leave on my advisor's desk. They all have the expletive inscription.Turns out none of the buggers actually expressed the transgene and I took the project in another direction, but that doesn't make that small victory any less sweet.I've decided to start collecting these moments so please feel free to share your own in the comments.

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