Museum Blog

  • I felt it coming on yesterday, the headache the itchy throat, the inability to focus.... I knew what was coming, I was at the cusp of coming down with something. Sure enough, I woke up this morning in a daze of achiness, swollen glands and complete congestion- YUCK! Plus the smell of freshly g…
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  • As a lab that studies one form of chemoreception (aka taste), I could not resist sharing this dance video about the other form of chemoreception -- olfaction (aka smell). This is evidence that the nitty-gritty details of our scientific world can be communicated in a variety of interesting ways…
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  • It's been really busy in Lab Central! Staff and volunteers have been enrolling curious and science-hungry visitors in Genetics of Taste: A Flavor For Health like crazy! As of today, we've enrolled 931of participants in our research study and counting! That means we have 931of samples that need…
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  • The best science is that which we do not expect, and the best communication of science comes when the public is involved. So this post is dedicated to the Blue Tongue Blog's dedicated readers. I am so pleased that you have all shared your interest with me about the latest study in bitter taste…
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  • I decided, as a sophomore in high school (see image below), to go into genetics because it was fascinating, it had to do with humans, and it was NEW. The last point being the most important- it was new and not well understood, which meant adults didn't actually know everything and therefore I …
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  • Our department head, Dr. Nicole Garneau, who I found out loves They Might Be Giants (last saw them play at Rutgers when she was an undergrad), was stoked when I found the following song. To learn more about supertasters, check out my earlier blog post "Devin the Supertaster: Let Me get My Cape…
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  • What a great year it has been for us in the Genetics of Taste lab, and it seems others are taking notice. I returned to the office to find a wonderful present from Rebecca Jacobson, a science and technology reporter for PBS- an article about our study, the citizen scientists involved, and cool…
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  • In the midst of the Egyptian crisis several weeks ago came a startling and provocative article in the Wall Street Journal. Alex Joffe, an archaeologist and historian, argued that the attacks on the Egyptian Museum held a lesson for another controversial issue: the battle over Greece's Pa…
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  • This odd looking critter is the type specimen for a newly described species of pseudoscorpion,  Cryptocreagris steinmanni. A type specimen is the "name holder" - the single specimen upon which a new species description is based. This arachnid is about 5 mm long and is named after De…
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  • Now that you're educated on how we get DNA out of cheek cells we collect from visitor samples (Don't know? Find out here), I'm going to tell you about a process called polymerase chain reaction (PCR). This technique is how scientists make lots… in fact trillions of copies of DNA from the smal…
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