Friday, November 2, 2007

"Watch me do this experiment"

Today I have discovered a new tool that the fantastic internet world offers for sharing scientific discoveries, and I thought I would share it with you. It’s called JoVE – Journal of Visualized Experiments, and it’s an online video-publication for biological research.

Here you can see ‘video articles’, i.e. you watch a video of interviews to scientists, or of scientists explaining their findings to you or, even better, showing their experiments to you: you see the graphs and figures you would see on a paper, but also the real experiments, you see how they do them hands-on. They include step-by-step instructions and discussions about possible technical problems. They seem to be mostly about new laboratory techniques, which I guess are the type of experiments that can benefit more from this type of tool, because it’s some times difficult to imagine them without visualising them.

For example, there are demonstrations of ‘simple’ techniques, such as how to window chicken eggs for developmental studies , or the dissection of Drosophila ovaries. But there are also some more complicated ones, such as the thin sectioning of slice preparations for immunohistochemistry or a microfluidic device with groove patterns for studying cellular behavior .

I invite you to browse the journal – you might finally learn an experimental protocol you did not know how to do – and even to submit your own videos.

Share the (science) love!

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