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Laura Grassie

Laura received her PhD in Molecular Biology at the University of Dundee before moving into the world of scientific publishing. She has previously worked as an Assitant Editor for the journal Genome Biology. She is now Managing Editor at Bitesize Bio.

Articles by Laura Grassie:

Top 10 Tips for Viva Success

Thesis defenses are supposed to be grueling, horrific affairs that you fear for weeks beforehand, right? What if there was a way to get through your thesis without tears, torture, and perhaps even enjoy it?

Female PhD candidate giving thumbs up in front of Viva panel after viva success
24 Sep 2020 PhD Survival

What is a DOI and Why Should You Care?

DOIs got you confused? Find out what they are and how to use them.

Magnifying glass on a book, symbolizing how a DOI allows doucments to be found
21 Apr 2020 Soft Skills and Tools&Software and Online Tools

10 Ideas for Researchers Working from Home

Working from home but don’t have a garage lab? We’ve got 10 ideas to keep you productive while you’re working away from the bench.

Female scientist working from home
23 Mar 2020 Organization and Productivity&Personal Development&Soft Skills and Tools&Software and Online Tools&Writing, Publishing and Presenting

Tips for Choosing Your Lab Notebook Pen (and Why You Need to Choose Carefully)

Keeping a meticulous lab record of your experiments is a necessity. And it’s drilled into us to back up our computers, including backups stored in different locations to ensure vital records don’t get lost. But how do we protect the hard copy information in our lab books? You may not have given much thought previously…

22 Aug 2019 Writing, Publishing and Presenting

Genomic Analysis of Single Cells: The Benefits of Being Single

You don’t need to be told about how next generation sequencing technologies have revolutionized the way we study the genome and the epigenome. Whether you want to look at transcription (RNA-seq), translation (Ribo-seq) genomes (DNA-seq), interactions of proteins and DNA (ChIP-Seq) or to study epigenetic features such as methylation (whole genome bilsulfite sequencing) there are…

13 Apr 2015 Genomics and Epigenetics&Sigma-Aldrich® Advanced Genomics

Common Sins When Publishing Your Paper

When it comes to publishing your paper you want to show the world what excellent research you’ve worked so hard to produce. Part of that is providing enough detail so that others can reproduce your work and take it further. There are certain details you need to include in your paper; many, but not all…

04 Feb 2015 Writing, Publishing and Presenting

Get Great Yields by Optimizing Your Bacterial Cultures

Bacterial cultures may be much easier to grow than mammalian cells, but if your yields are suboptimal there are plenty of parameters to play with. Here we list a few of the things you should consider to maximize your culture growth. Shaking speed Shaking is performed to allow aeration of your culture, which is of…

19 Jan 2015 Protein Expression and Analysis

Common New Year’s Resolutions for Scientists (and how to keep them) 

A new year means new resolutions and a chance to improve ourselves. All to often however these changes last only a few weeks before we slip back into old ways. Why not make 2015 different and make a change that sticks? These changes don’t have to be huge, and often it’s the small changes that…

01 Jan 2015 Organization and Productivity

Christmas gifts for the scientist in your life

Christmas is fast approaching but if you haven’t yet found the perfect gift never fear, there is still time! We’ve put together some of the most fabulous gifts for those of the science persuasion. For the trendy scientist  Have a lady scientist to buy for? Why not splash out and get a gorgeous silk scarf?…

15 Dec 2014 Fun Stuff

Common Myths of Copyright

Copyright is something that a lot of scientists only give a passing thought to. However, this is something that affects us all. If you publish your work, then you need to understand copyright, the different types of copyright, the difference between open access and copyright and what you can and cannot do under different copyright…

17 Nov 2014 Science Communication & Ethics

A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words – Making Diagrams Simple

Figures play a central role in science not just as a way of displaying results, although this is obviously important, but also as a way of getting across complicated theories and processes in a relatively simple and direct manner.  I’m a firm believe in the power of putting ideas into diagrams and spent a considerable…

02 Apr 2014 Writing, Publishing and Presenting

Let’s Talk About Stats: Getting the Most out of your Multiple Datasets with Post-hoc Testing

So you’ve performed a test such as an ANOVA and have found that there is statistical significance in your data (lucky you!), however you now want to know where that significance lies. When you are comparing multiple sets of data it might seem like a logical thought to simply perform an individual t-test between each…

20 Mar 2014 Lab Statistics & Math

Let’s Talk About Stats: Comparing Multiple Datasets

Last week I focused on the left-hand side of this diagram and talked about statistical tests for comparing only two datasets.  Unfortunately, many experiments are more complicated and have three or more datasets.  Different statistical tests are used for comparing multiple data sets. Today I will focus on the right side of the diagram and…

12 Mar 2014 Lab Statistics & Math

Let’s Talk About Stats: Comparing Two Sets of Data

There are so may statistical tests out there it can be difficult to determine which is the right test to use. Below is a simple diagram to help you quickly determine which test is right for you. Although this is by no means a comprehensive guide, it includes some of the most common tests and…

05 Mar 2014 Lab Statistics & Math

Let’s Talk About Stats: Understanding the Lingo

The first hurdle in learning about statistics is the language.  It’s terrible to be reading about a particular statistical test and have to be looking up the meaning of every third word. The type of data you have, the number of measurements, the range of your data values and how your data cluster are all…

26 Feb 2014 Lab Statistics & Math

Avoiding Plagiarism in Science

I remember when I first learned about plagiarism during my undergraduate course. The lecturers were so firm in telling us that if we got caught plagiarizing we would face serious repercussions and that all our work, especially our dissertations, would be vigorously checked by plagiarism detecting software. I was so panicked that I would inadvertently…

12 Feb 2014 Science Communication & Ethics

The Ten Lab Commandments: Or the Guide to a Happy Lab

I was lucky enough to do my PhD in an extremely friendly and well-organised lab.  In my opinion, these two key traits are required for a successful research experience. This environment, while appearing effortless, was due in part to the hard work of the senior postdoc who kept the lab, and all of us, in…

30 Dec 2013 Lab Statistics & Math

A Guide for Solving Your Lab Math Problems

Math is an important part of lab life, from making solutions to calculating protein concentrations, and miscalculations can cause mayhem for your experiments. Therefore it is important that your math is right, or you could spend weeks trying to figure out what’s going wrong in your experiments. I was hopeless at remembering how to do…

16 Dec 2013 Lab Statistics & Math

10 Tips For Organizing Your Lab Book

Writing your lab book is easy to put off as it never seems quite as important as splitting your cells or running that gel. I’m sure, like me, you’ve said to yourself it’s fine if I leave it for a day or maybe even a week, as I’ve got all my notes to work from.…

27 Nov 2013 Organization and Productivity

Conrad Waddington and his epigenetic landscape

I was first introduced to Conrad Waddington’s epigenetic landscape when reading ‘The epigenetic revolution’, a fantastic introduction to epigenetics, and in my opinion, a must read for anyone who is looking for an entertaining and enjoyable introduction to this fascinating field. In his model, Waddington likens the process of cellular differentiation to a marble, which…

04 Nov 2013 Genomics and Epigenetics&Sigma-Aldrich® Advanced Genomics

Useful Tips to Keep on Top of New Literature

It’s a gut wrenching feeling to come across a paper that impacts your work, and even worse when it turns out the paper is weeks or even months old. Perhaps finding that paper earlier would have saved you time with your experiments or change the direction of your project. It used to be (long before…

29 May 2013 Taming the Literature

How to get Organised With Reference Managers for Science- Zotero

My previous posts have discussed the features of several reference managers, some of which are free and others that are paid. Last, but certainly not least, I would like to draw your attention to another free software, Zotero (pronounced zoh-TAIR-oh). Originally a Firefox add-on, Zotero now also has a standalone desktop application, which can be…

27 May 2013 Taming the Literature

How to get Organised With Reference Managers for Science- EndNote

Last week we discussed Papers, which is a well-known reference manager used by many academics. Today I am focusing on what might be the most well-known reference manager – EndNote. Thomson Reuters’ EndNote is often available free through Universities. And if you have this opportunity, you should definitely take advantage of it!  If you want…

20 May 2013 Taming the Literature

How To Get Organized With Reference Managers for Science – ReadCube

In my last post on reference managers I discussed Mendeley, a well-established reference manager and the one I’m most familiar with. Today I am going to tell you about ReadCube, a more recent addition to the referencing software market brought to you from Labtiva. ReadCube was created by two Harvard students, Siniša Hrvatin and Robert…

13 May 2013 Taming the Literature

How to get Organised With Reference Managers for Science- Papers

My previous posts on reference mangers have discussed Mendeley and ReadCube. Today I will be discussing Papers, the reference manager I first encountered and the one favoured by many academics, including my PhD supervisor. For anyone who is a fan of Apple products, Papers is likely to be the software you are most familiar with.…

06 May 2013 Taming the Literature

How To Get Organized With Reference Managers for Science – Mendeley

In this series of posts we are discussing the features of popular reference managers.  This post covers Mendeley, one of the most established reference managers.  I have a special fondness for Mendeley as it is the software that I used to organise all my literature during my PhD. Mendeley is a free reference manager program…

29 Apr 2013 Taming the Literature

How To Get Organized With Reference Managers for Science – An Overview

The internet has provided us with simpler and quicker access to the latest research published in science, allowing us to view and download articles to keep for future reference. But how do you manage to keep such a mountain of papers organised, ensuring that you can easily find that paper you read the other week…

24 Apr 2013 Taming the Literature

The Beginner’s Guide to LaTeX

For those of you who read the previous post about LaTeX and are interested in giving it a go, but just don’t know where to start, this article should get you on your feet. I used LaTeX to write my thesis and was (mostly) self taught, so I know how scary it is to begin…

05 Dec 2012 Software and Online Tools

10 Common PPE Sins

Labs are a dangerous place, full of nasty chemicals and harmful biological materials. Yet so many people are flippant about their own personal safety (and the safety of others) when working in this hazardous environment. One way in which people make lab work more dangerous is the misuse of personal protective equipment (PPE). Below are…

26 Nov 2012 Lab Safety

Silver or Blue: What’s the Best Stain for Your Proteins?

Staining proteins following SDS-PAGE or 2-dimensional electrophoresis is a very useful technique for visualising a global population of proteins or checking expression of your recombinant proteins, but how do you know which stain to use? This article explains the pros and cons of two of the most common protein staining techniques, silver staining and coomassie…

28 Sep 2012 Protein Expression and Analysis

How to Reduce Antibody Contamination When Western Blotting Co-IPs

Co-immunoprecipitation is a method used to detect protein-protein interactions. While it can be wonderful when it works, there are many problems associated with this technique. One of the biggest problems that I have faced when using this method is contamination by the light and heavy chains of my precipitating antibody when performing western blots of…

24 Sep 2012 Protein Expression and Analysis
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