Thursday, January 29, 2009

Picture a Day-Day 57

What a glorious sunrise, right hunny? Okay you'll look later.
Well despite the joys of a frosted over windshield it was a wonderful day. I got to kill off some of my cells.
Cell culture is a strange thing, you spend so much time worrying and fretting trying to keep the cursed things alive that as soon as it's time to start the experiment you feel overjoyed finally being rid of the needy things.

So how hard is it to kill off some cells?

Well first you need the right tools:
The cells need a good bath before you can send them off to die. So they get washed three times with that clear liquid you see (PBS, no affiliation with the tv station that brings you 10 hour marathons of Ken Burns) and then they get their last meal.
Once that's all ready to go, time to kill them off. There are numerous ways for cells to die, this time it's pretty simple. I just have to add a specially grown bacteria to some wells, a heat shocked version to some and keep the last two as a control.

Then I sit back and watch the fun. I'd love to be able to show you the cool picture of cells surrounded by more and more little rod shaped bacteria, but sadly cameras don't work well through microscope lenses.

But this bacteria thrived so well in a few hours you could tell which wells were infected and which weren't by how cloudy the media got: And that, ladies and more ladies, is how we go about killing cells with bacteria. It was a bit strange hoping for a bacteria infection as that's usually a really bad thing and causes me to rip my hair out.

Oh well, one plate down. Just 3 more to go. I wonder what fun way we'll kill these ones off.


AmyJean said...

That is so cool.... I love all the pics :)

Bean said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Whoops. I accidentally posted with my old school blogger account that is there because I'm signed into gmail.

What I wanted to say is: That is pretty intense. Are you trying to do something specific with these cells and bacteria or are you growing and killing cells for the fun of it?

Chesney said...

Wow, what a beautiful sunrise! Gorgeous! And very interesting about the cells and killing them off. It sounds like you love your work!!