As I mentioned in my last entry, I was very excited about the opportunity to extract organs from the mice. Last Monday I did indeed get to cut open a few mice and take out the liver, spleen, and a femur as well as make some blood smears. For the first part of the week, extracting mouse organs was really the only thing that was out of the ordinary.
However, Thursday was an extremely exciting day for me. I spent a few hours in the morning shadowing Dr. James Mckinnell and his team as they performed rounds over in the hospital. He is a member of the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology group at the UNM Hospital so I had the opportunity of see patients at different stages of treatment for leukemia as well as other forms of cancer and blood diseases. It was amazing to see how it was really a team caring for the patients, as the entire group reviewed the treatments that each patient was receiving before going to visit them.
After following during rounds in the hospital, I got to learn how to draw blood for the first time! Dr. Winter was gracious enough to allow me to draw blood from one of his arms while Ksenia did the same to his other arm right afterwards. I have to admit that sticking a needle into someone is definitely a strange experience at first. After Dr. Winter drew blood from Ksenia and I, I was able to begin the process of genotyping us for the FcγRIII receptor (what I have been working on this summer). I am currently in the final steps of genotyping our blood, so I am looking forward to finding out something about myself that I never thought I would know!
This weekend I decided that it was my best chance to hike up the Sandia Mountains that are on the east edge of Albuquerque. Saturday morning I got up early to start hiking and to beat the heat. The trails I took ended up being around 10miles long and raised an elevation of 3,819 feet. It took me a little bit over three hours and I spent the rest of the day napping and just laying around. It was a lot more tiring that I thought it would be!
This week I will be continuing the experiments that I have been working on all summer as well as finishing up my presentation for the lab meeting next Monday. I’ve realized that I only have two weeks left here and time has gone by extremely fast! If you find yourself with some extra time, feel free to look through some pictures that I have put up at http://samsnmpics.shutterfly.com. Thanks for reading!
Sam Stevens ’13