The Biochemist Blog

PhD reflections: lessons and advice

By Ralitsa Madsen, Institute of Metabolic Science, Cambridge, UK

As a driven PhD student who is dedicating most of my waking hours to a very ambitious project, I often need to justify my choice to others. Wouldn’t I be set up for success with fewer hours in the lab, less scientific reading and a bit more faith in my own talent? My usual response is to ask the following question: how do elite athletes succeed?

A Journey Known as PhD

By Debosree Pal, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, India

Why is a PhD called a Doctor of Philosophy? The term finds its origin way back in the 19th century in German faculties where it was introduced to incorporate arenas of research that were not encompassed under the regular disciplines of medicine, law or theology. As the world progressed and more areas of research in science were introduced, the term was retained.

Overcoming the so-called ‘male, pale and stale’ world of STEM

By Nabila Juhi, Urmston Grammar School

I was going to find a cure for cancer, seven-year-old me decided. From a young age I’ve always been interested in science. It was perhaps one subject where I felt I’d found my niche: it was logical, I was good at it and it provided me with answers to questions I’d yet to even consider. Coming from an immigrant family, with parents who didn’t continue onto higher education, I was encouraged to stick to it.

A day in the life of a cardiovascular biology PhD student

By Tom Keeley, King’s College London, UK

I’ve spent the last three years looking for a better way to recreate and observe cell responses in the laboratory. This has been the focus for my PhD, ‘Defining an in vitro model of normoxia and its implications for nitric oxide signalling’, which I’ve been researching in the Vascular Biology Lab in the British Heart Foundation Centre of Research Excellence at King’s College London.