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Cristy Gelling

Cristy is an antipodean postdoc who is surprised to find herself in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania giving human diseases to yeast. She sincerely hopes the yeast don't hold it against her and that the results eventually make a difference to the lives of the humans that fund her. You can follow her on twitter: @CristyGelling

Articles by Cristy Gelling:

Which Type of Ethanol Should I Use?

Want to know more about ethanol grades commonly used in the lab? We help you make sense of your flammables cabinet with our rundown of the ethanol grades typically used in molecular biology, as well as some important rules for how to use them correctly.

Three shot glasses and a clear glass bottle containing clear alcoholic liquid to represent the ethanol grades that can be used in the lab
22 Apr 2021 DNA / RNA Manipulation and Analysis

Join the club: Ten benefits of joining a professional scientific society

If you already spend all day hanging out with other scientists, the last thing you might feel like doing is joining a professional scientific society. With today’s shrinking budgets, you might also start to question whether this line on your CV is worth the membership dues. However, joining societies has many career benefits in addition…

10 Apr 2013 Career Development & Networking

10 Uses for a PhD Thesis

Earning a PhD is something to be proud of. It represents years of hard work and an original contribution to science. And yet, the main product of this labor is a very large, rather dull book that gathers dust on a bookshelf. You will never read it again, nor will your labmates or even your…

22 Oct 2012 PhD Survival

How to Clean a Waterbath (When You Can’t Avoid it Any Longer)

There’s something disconcerting about going to incubate a sensitive and irreplaceable sample in a water bath, only to be confronted by the Creature from the Black Lagoon. Unfortunately, water baths are an inviting habitat for all kinds of life, are often shared by many users, and are a perennially unpopular item to clean.  To help…

20 Apr 2012 Equipment Mastery and Hacks

Make Better Figures Faster Using Illustrator

Against the advice of journals and printers, many scientists use Microsoft Powerpoint to assemble posters and figures. You should consider upgrading to Adobe Illustrator! For generating scientific figures, Illustrator is more powerful and flexible than Powerpoint and is designed to produce print documents at high quality resolution. This means that journals will stop sending your…

06 Feb 2012 Writing, Publishing and Presenting

How To Make Figures Right The First Time

Collecting the data took several years, writing the paper took several months, assembling the figures took several weeks, and converting those figures to PDFs took a frustratingly long day. You waited a month for the paper to come back from review, then two months re-doing experiments to satisfy a sadistic reviewer. Finally, your paper is…

30 Jan 2012 Writing, Publishing and Presenting

Danger: You Might be Pipetting Yourself Out of a Job

You might be proud of your pipetting skills (if not, check this article on how to stop pipetting errors from ruining your experiments) and be churning out data faster than a liquid handling robot, but beware… you might also be pipetting yourself out of a job. I almost did. Pain due to pipetting is common.…

23 Nov 2011 Lab Safety

How to transfer one SDS-PAGE gel onto two membranes

Have you ever wished you could transfer the same SDS-PAGE gel twice? Sometimes, when you are blotting for many different proteins of similar size, stripping and reprobing multiple times can become impractical.  Here’s a simple diffusion transfer method that can be used to generate duplicate membranes from a single gel: Take a glass plate, or…

24 Oct 2011 Protein Expression and Analysis

Train Yourself to Measure OD600 by Eye: An Improved Approach

Back in August I shared my training regimen for guesstimating the OD­600 readings of microbial cultures with superhuman accuracy. Although my method is effective, I will admit that it has two shortcomings: you need to make a separate standard curve for each container type, and guesstimation is not an officially sanctioned scientific method. But now,…

10 Oct 2011 Cells and Model Organisms

Why You Should waste time chatting at work

Sometimes, you just need to put your head down and get some work done.  But if you spend 100% of your work time in that intensely focused state that most people only find when under the threat of a deadline, you could be shooting yourself in the foot. That’s because although everyone needs to be…

26 Sep 2011 Dealing with Fellow Scientists

Six Fixes For Antibody Co-Elution In Immunoprecipitations

Do you want to immunoprecipitate (IP) a protein with a molecular weight that is anywhere near 55 kDa or 25 kDa? Then you have an irritating problem to deal with: antibody co-elution. But don’t panic, we have six strategies for dealing with your new problem. The Problem: Typically, the IP antibody is bound to Protein…

31 Aug 2011 Protein Expression and Analysis

How To Train Yourself to Measure OD600 by Eye

I once knew a postdoc who was absurdly accurate at guessing the optical density of microbial cultures. I was jealous – imagine how much time I would save if I could spec my cultures just by looking at them! Since I lacked the innate optical talents required to compete with my friend, I developed a…

01 Aug 2011 Cells and Model Organisms

Clean-up or Fraud? How to Avoid Photoshopping Your Way Into Disgrace

Thanks to the power of digital imaging software, faking data is a lot easier than doing real science. Clearly the honest majority of us would never deliberately distort the scientific record, but is it possible to stumble into trouble through sheer ignorance? Quite possibly. The line between innocent enhancement and deliberate fraud can be blurry…

11 Jul 2011 Writing, Publishing and Presenting
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