Keep Calm and Kick Astrocyte

My first week of research in the Eroglu lab has been filled with a lot of information. Having done research before, I didn’t quite expect to find myself spending so much time as the student. However, I have learned so many new techniques in just 5 days. These have started to quickly reshape my plans for the summer. I’ve already started to see how scientists in the Eroglu lab go about investigating a new protein, like I will be doing for PTPRZ1. First, we thinly section brains into 20 um slices, stain these with fluorescent antibodies, and look and image them with a microscope. This process can be repeated for different kinds of mice, like individuals of different age, sex or genetically engineered strains. I expect to repeat these methods many times over the summer to try to get a better idea of what PTPRZ1 might be doing.

Another exciting part of my research has been learning how the different members of the lab go about their work and learning how to plan experiments. Katie has already done a good job of showing me how the whole process of experimentation works and I hope to build on the things we are able to learn each week in order to come closer and closer to understanding PTPRZ1.

I’ve also already started making plans with Katie and my PI Dr. Eroglu to continue my research when the semester starts so I hope to be able to learn a good amount of techniques so that I can easily flow into doing work over the semester. I hope that I am able to make good progress over the next 7 weeks so that I may have a better idea of where PTPRZ1 is acting and can focus on figuring out what it is doing by the time the semester starts.

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