Thursday, December 22, 2016

Misconceptions



One of the biggest misconceptions about the scientific process can date far back within our learning and the start of our scientific thinking. As young students we are given the idea that science is extremely structured and can’t be broadened, science has no means of creativity, and a scientific problem is something that can be solved and proven only right or wrong. At first glance we make the scientific processes seem as if they are set in their ways and that there is no changing anything about the process or meaning. Although science at a quick glance looks set in its ways, the real interpretation of science steps us outside of the box that we started in as young scientists.
At a young age we started with basic structured labs and experiments that showed us strict ways about what science was and gave us an exact answer to why things worked this way or why they didn’t. Our first look at the process of science started us off with one of the biggest misconceptions. Making us think that science had to be one way and that there was no room for error or simpler ways to get similar results was not correct. Today as we move further into how we conduct experiments and can thoroughly note that science is a lot more than what we thought it to be based off of the misconceptions we trusted when we were younger.  When we are younger we are told how a reaction in science would work and then given an example like a lab. Today in a sciences class we are told what will happen but in some case what is told and predicted isn’t always exactly what ends up being shown. We were told that the purpose of scientific inquiry was to constantly prove a hypothesis to be correct after failure and constant examples we can be shown that having a correct hypothesis isn’t always the case and something new isn’t always proved in an experiment.
The creativeness and the importance of exploration is key to proving and hitting on the factors of the experimental process.  Science is much more than a step by step procedure to a result we already know the answer to. Science is constantly changing and you change it by constructing a new experiment to prove similar results and thinking outside of the box to find the true meaning to why things happen the way they do.  Science involves constructive thinking and open-mindedness towards endless outcomes and possibilities of an experiment. We need to not look at science as a set of just rules, theories and laws but a creative way of thinking and proving and disproving what we have in the world we live in. Without the creativeness and imagination of science we would have never been brought to the facts and theories we base tons of information on today.
Creativeness is a key part of the scientific process, showing that any idea or object is useful and has the possibility to lead you towards a conclusion within your data. Creativity is a new idea that has value in solving a problem and without it science would have never grown and the amount of question we still have today would have multiplied in size. Working in the science field you need to note that structure and basic procedures are not the root and only means of the scientific process. Science is so much more than just another data point or to prove a hypothesis. A lot of us think that science is just a bunch of facts that need to be proven, but with an open mind towards endless possibilities the creativeness within the scientific process comes into play.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Death turns a near-blind eye to the Greenland shark:

According to marine biologists Peter Bushnell, the Greenland shark seems to be almost ageless.  Living in the deep Arctic ocean where they can thrive for decades, they mostly feed upon fish and the remains of other dead animals such as polar bears and even moose. The reason why scientists believe these sharks live for so long is the fact that they grow less than one centimeter a year. Based off of their growth rate, scientists were able to discover that female Greenland sharks do not reach sexual maturity until the old age of 152. Male sharks on the other hand can grow to be 6 meters long and live to the age of 500 according to some estimates.
Previously finding the age was more of a guessing game than anything else. The first method used in finding the age of these sharks was similar to finding the age of a tree. Scientists would count the calcified layers on the shark’s fins and scale to try and determine their age. This method didn’t work very well for the Greenland sharks due to the fact that they have spineless fins and too soft of vertebrae. The answer was in plain sight, for sharks of course. Scientist used radioactive carbon - 14 in the center of the shark’s eye lens in order to measure their ages.

I found this article to be very interesting because who would've thought that a shark of all creatures could live to be 500 years old or more. I want to know more about the ecosystem in which they live and how it may benefit them to live for so many years. Due to the fact that females don’t reach sexual maturity for many years, fishing and climate changes could have a massive impact on the number of Greenland sharks in the Arctic ocean.  Knowing that there is another animal out there that can out live the famous “long living turtle” is pretty good. ;) I would love to know more about these amazing creatures of the deep blue.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A cure for cancer? Say what?

             Cancer has alway been in the forefront of medical news. With that being said, a cure has also come into the minds of people all across the world. I for one thought that it would take many years past my time for there to be a possible cure for cancer. After reading this article it brought the thought into my mind that a possible cure was not so far away. In this article it mentioned that within the year there could clinical trials set up in the United States.  Highly educated scientist in China have recently discovered with a few DNA modification they could develop a cure for cancer. This development has allowed these scientists to use immune cells or T cells, as noted by Lu You, to fight the disease from the inside.
This type of gene editing is known as CRISPR, which is used to cut genes at certain points in order to modify them.  This done by using enzymes to trim out specific parts of a piece of the T cell’s DNA.  From here, the scientist change the cell's internal code then add it back into the patient's bloodstream, which will hopefully help the other immune cells multiply to fight of the cancer.
Sophomore year in biology we spent a large some of the class learning about how genes worked as well as how chromosomes split at different points. Chromosomes splitting in different areas causes children to have different features just like how gene editing cause cells to have different features. After reading this article and being informed of a possible cure it made me think of all of the advancements and education that lead up  to this development. Our world is constantly discovering new things about genetics and  DNA slowly unravelling the mystery that is the human body.  



Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Climate Change and Grolar Bears:


Climate Change has resulted in the loss of many species throughout the entirety of our world’s existences, causing many animals to become endangered as well as extinct in some cases. One of the most common animals struggling to stay in population today is the polar bear, which is known for being a rare species in the Arctic. In this article it was noted that due to changes in a species habitat, like the polar bears for example, there might be a way for them to repopulate and evolve with their cousin the grizzly bear.
Studies have been shown that genetically polar bears and grizzly bears have the possible of becoming a hybrid but the probability for this to occur naturally is low. In the article it is stated that on average only 6.4% of animal species would actually meet  geographically and even then that could take years to happen. During the beginning of biology sophomore year we talked about ecology and how organisms are affected within the environment. Relating this topic to my previous biology class and the topic of ecology and natural selection this shows how natural happenings could throw off the lives of an organism. Natural selection relates to this article, by showing how the polar bears will have to adapt to a new environment which could result creating the grolar bear hybrid.
I find it extremely interesting that the possibility of producing hybrids could become a natural solution for the re-population of some animals like the polar bear. I would like to know more about the genetic makeup of these to species and how it is possible to create hybrids.