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advice in microbiology/cell biology

student nospam at machine.com
Sat May 17 17:13:33 EST 2003

I hope this is not too far off topic.  I would like some advice informed by microbiology and perhaps
cell biology.  Let me set the background, and then my questions will follow.  I am at a point of
decision that can affect my career.

I am presented an opportunity to work in a biochemistry/molecular biology lab, partly as a
technician and partly as a researcher with my own project.  This is a lab in medical research, and
its research focuses on the function and regulation of a particular family of proteins that have to
do with some forms of cancer.  The lab deals with mammalian cells only, so not prokaryotes.

I have background training in scientific research during which I read and learn quite a bit about
microbiology and biochemistry, but I have no hands-on experience.  I want to learn some lab skills
and biochemical techniques, as well as to work with cells.  But eventually, I hope to work with

My questions:
1.  The PI of the lab is willing to train me and teach me from the ground up, but she wants a
minimum of 2 years of commitment from me.  Is two years too much time for me to committee myself?

2.  If I do work there, will the skills and techniques (in an area of cancer research with mammalian
cells) that I will learn transferrable to study bacteria?


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