The Biochemist Blog

Let the Trojan vesicles in

By Paulo Szwarc, Federal University of Paraná, Brazil

Cancer sure is tricky. We try to starve it, cut it, stress it out of our bodies. We even bombard it with radiation until it dies. And yet, not due to lack of trying, many times we lose the fight. It escapes, evades our resistance. Its overly mutational nature leads it to adapt, dodging the deadly effects of chemotherapeutics. Not only that, but the lack of selectivity in many treatments means that while we harm the tumour, we also wreak havoc to our own healthy cells. It makes the battle much harder.

Where are all the trans scientists?

By Dorieke Grijseels, University of Sussex

Today (March 31) marks International Transgender Day of Visibility. This day is dedicated to showing the incredible diversity of the trans community. This community is often lumped together with the other parts of the LGBT+ community, but is unique in its challenges and achievements, which should be celebrated. Although we’ve got a long way to go, more and more trans people are getting positive representation in the media, be that actor Alex Blue, writer Juno Dawson or model Munroe Bergdorf. The question remains, where are all the trans scientists?

Voice of the Future 2018

By Adam Jellett, University of Bristol

How would politicians cope being quizzed by a room full of young scientists and engineers? That’s what I sought to find out when I travelled to Westminster to take part in Voice of the Future 2018. This event, organised by the Royal Society of Biology and in its seventh iteration, is unique in its reversing of a Select Committee meeting, where MPs hold experts and government ministers to account in various areas of policy. At Voice of the Future, it is the MPs who are questioned so that we, the scientific community, can gain a better understanding of the world of policy and their views on UK science. Can we change their opinions? Can they change ours?

5 tips for getting into computational biology

By Fatima Vayani, King’s College London

I discovered computational biology (or bioinformatics, as it is also known) by chance during an internship when I was 17. I have always been a curious person, and from a young age was inclined to the life sciences. Having been surrounded by computers since childhood, however, I was excited by the notion of exploring nature without having to be in nature itself. Those who prefer not to work in the field or in a wet lab still have the ability to do biological research through computation!