So it’s almost the end of my 2nd week of accountability in my scholarship. I did rerun the assay and it didn’t work (again) so I ordered new reagents so I could try it one.more.time. I have a sneaking suspicion part of our trouble might have to do with the method we use to euthanize our animals and I’m in conversation with our vet to come up with an alternative.
I did also get up close and personal with our tissue and discovered that we have n =5 controls and n =4 experimentals (and another on the way next week) so I made an executive decision to stop collecting animals this summer and focus on analyzing what we have. Even as I write that, I’m not sure that’s the best idea, so I may revisit that decision. Last summer I made a handy dandy little chart to focus one of my research students and I employed that strategy again here. I went through each animal in each of the two groups and categorized it according to the 4 stages of progress: embedded, sectioned, histostained, immunostained. At this point at least 2 animals from each litter have been embedded. Then I printed out calendar pages for June, July, and August and mapped out how long it would take my research student to complete the other 3 stages of the process. I plan to recreate and expand the chart for my research student so he can see my vision. I’ll add categories like “pictures taken” and “tissue analyzed”. I think this will help us both stay on track with what has been done and what needs to be done.
My task now is to start working through the staining for the tissue that has already been sectioned. Then I can hopefully find a phenomenon worth analyzing–stay tuned!