The Blog

THERE’S TIMMUNITY AND THERE’S BIMMUNITY, AND THEY’RE DIFFERENT.

For those of us who have been living under a rock, or so enjoying the blissful benefits of domestic lockdown that we haven’t cared to pay attention, there’s a lot of interest in vaccine development to this pesky COVID19 thing. COVID19 is the disease that humans develop as a result of contracting the SARS-CoV-2 virus. … Continue reading THERE’S TIMMUNITY AND THERE’S BIMMUNITY, AND THEY’RE DIFFERENT.

REVIEWING FOR THE NIH – HOW IT (ACTUALLY) WORKS – PART 3

So, how is the sausage made? Every grant received by the study section head is assigned to three reviewers, Primary, Secondary and Tertiary. One or occasionally two of these may be an ad-hoc reviewer brought in specifically for that proposal. Usually, all three are regular (“Permanent”) members. These reviewers have self-certified that they don’t have … Continue reading REVIEWING FOR THE NIH – HOW IT (ACTUALLY) WORKS – PART 3

WHAT IS A Ph.D. ANYWAY, AND HOW DOES ONE GET ONE?

The degree of Doctor of Philosophy, usually called “Ph.D”, but sometimes called “D.Phil.” in universities such as Oxford for example, is universally recognized as the key to the door labelled “This Way to be an Independent Scientist.” It is a scientific apprenticeship, and like any other such, requires the production of a piece of work … Continue reading WHAT IS A Ph.D. ANYWAY, AND HOW DOES ONE GET ONE?

REVIEWING FOR THE NIH – HOW IT (ACTUALLY) WORKS – PART 1

Unless one is actually within the American biological / health research community, it’s hard to imagine the size of the research effort that the National Institutes of Health funds. There are twenty-one so-called “Research Institutes”, founded between 1948, when the initial core of research themes was developed, to 2010, with the development of NIMHD –  … Continue reading REVIEWING FOR THE NIH – HOW IT (ACTUALLY) WORKS – PART 1

WHY ON EARTH WOULD I LOOK AT MY DATA – IT’S SIGNIFICANT, RIGHT?

Of course, neither students nor experienced scientists actually ask this question, but quite often, it’s perfectly clear that they should do. Let’s consider these three (hypothetical) datasets. For argument’s sake, let’s assign them as the secretion of IL-6 in micrograms per mL from LPS-stimulated macrophages isolated from patients with: no known autoimmune disease (A), systemic … Continue reading WHY ON EARTH WOULD I LOOK AT MY DATA – IT’S SIGNIFICANT, RIGHT?

An Introduction…

“The Grumpy Old Professor.. don’t say you weren’t warned..” is obviously a bit tongue-in cheek, and in some posts it’s going to be more than others. I have been a Full Professor in a major US university, and I now hold the same title in an Adjunct context. I am pretty old by most counts, … Continue reading An Introduction…


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