Kelsey’s Motivational Factors in Research

Lagos de Covadonga

Written by Kelsey Kolar

qPCR results – Standard curve created by known sample concentration and CT values. Used to determine samples unknown gene concentrations

When I was first handed my qPCR samples packet 5 pages long 3 columns per page, I felt slightly overwhelmed. But I love a good challenge, and even more so, one with a meaningful purpose. I learned more about how our data and work in the lab expands to the world during our team meeting this past Friday. At the meeting, Maria the team’s Registered Dietician, showed us the program, questionnaire, and database that stockpiles the nutrition of our infant samples. This allows us in the lab to draw conclusions about how dietary intervention and bacterial concentration and presence in the gut at variable times are dependent on one another. When I came in Monday morning to start a full-week of qPCRs I felt motivated by the newly learned impacts! I believe that this motivation was the underlying factor to help me focus on technique and sanitation during the protocol. I obtained my best R2 values for my standard curve. This value tells you how close your duplicate standards are to one another, the standard curves accuracy is crucial in obtaining accurate concentrations for the samples. Since Monday I have processed all Full-term infant samples, ⅘ pages of preterm infants, and I plan on finishing the extreme preterm infant’s samples next Monday and Tuesday! After this, we will analyze our results and see which samples we need to retest. Week 8 will provide more detail into analysis and results for our target antibiotic resistance gene abundance and presence.

Outside of the lab, I ventured to Lagos de Covadonga; the national park contains 360-degree views and is among Picos de Europa. I have never been genuinely speechless by natures beauty until this day! I have also taken my adventures to Playa de Gulpiyuri and the beautiful town Lastres! This upcoming week’s adventures couldn’t be more anticipated with Barcelona in sight.

Oceanside view from Playa de Gulpiyuri