A short letter in the journal Nature also highlights the problem that normalization of data can cause for statistical testing of significance using a t-test. The letter (Data transformation practices in biomedical sciences) describes how normalization of data can lead to a higher rate of false positives – a worry for all scientists.
I’ve decided to join the brave new world of twitter, so if you’re already there, you can find me there (@mairlthomas).
Biologists are not the best mathematicians in the world. But that’s okay because many of our experiments do not require complicated mathematical manipulations. However, we do often use statistics, and this is where our training often lets us down. Many university biology courses do not require students to study statistics and therefore many biologists lack … Continue reading
As I mentioned in a previous blog entry, antibodies are a vital tool used by biomedical researchers every day. This is one of the reasons I’m interested in them, but antibodies also play a critical role in our immune defence against invading pathogens such as viruses and bacteria. In addition, they are increasingly used in medical … Continue reading
‘Uncaged Monkeys’ at the Hammersmith Apollo on December 13th had the added excitement of the announcement that the Higgs Boson particle has been ‘glimpsed’ (meaning they’re not 100% sure that it’s there) at the large hadron collider. On stage, the evening was hosted by Robin Ince, who was joined by Adam Rutherford, Ben Goldacre, Simon … Continue reading
An exciting new paper in the journal Nature:http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature10571.html shows that bacteria occupying the same ecological niche within the human body exchange DNA. Studying the transfer may help elucidate which bacterial genes are important for causing disease.
There is no doubt that millions of lives have been saved through the introduction of vaccination, improved sanitation and the use of antibiotics. Since the identification of disease-causing microbes in the 19th century by Pasteur and Koch, childhood mortality rates have been drastically reduced. This is an important backdrop to more recent work on the ‘Hygiene … Continue reading
What does a scientist actually do on a daily basis? A question with too many answers because it depends on their area of science and the research aims, but I thought I’d give a brief description of some of the things I get up to in the lab. This may be of interest if you’re … Continue reading
Hello to all interested in tasty bites of science – not healthy perhaps, but quite filling! I’ll be posting thoughts and commentary on research and news in science, so keep reading.