Friday, April 17, 2015
Countries that grow poppies used to hold a monopoly on the ingredients to the main opiate painkilling drugs. Then in 1979, Dr. Kenner Rice of NIDDK’s Laboratory of Medicinal Chemistry (he is now at NIDA) discovered the critical chemical reaction enabling large-scale production of totally synthetic morphine, codeine, and thebaine, the three basic raw materials in opium.
Monday, March 30, 2015
Recently, I had the privilege of presenting a journal article to my lab group’s journal club in the PAIN (Pain And Integrative Neuroscience) lab for Dr. Catherine Bushnell. One goal of our lab is to look at the relationship and differences between itch and pain. So, what is the purpose of a journal club?
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
We are all given a name by our parents, nicknames by friends, roles and titles in school and at work. In my life, I have been known as “Goose,” “that blonde girl over there,” and, most commonly, “Lucy.” Here at the NIH, my most important title is that of “postbac,” or, more endearingly, “fledgling scientist.” Although this title does not necessarily command awestruck wonder, it does indicate recent graduates’ integral roles in labs at the NIH. The road to success is long, yet well worn, and we all have our own starting points.
Saturday, December 27, 2014
Let’s start with some numbers: 30,000 neuroscientists, five days, and 20 pages of notes. It all adds up to a week well spent at the recent Society for Neuroscience (SfN) conference in Washington, D.C. Researchers from around the world, many from the NIH IRP, descended on the Washington Convention Center to share their most recent research, discoveries, thoughts, and future ideas.
Friday, December 5, 2014
Here’s an example of how basic science can lead to clinical applications: Dr. Julius Axelrod’s discoveries about neurotransmitters and the metabolism of the nervous system lead to the development of a pain reliever, a new class of antidepressants, and a Nobel Prize.