Biology Matters. This blog is for writing about current issues in the biological sciences and also about why biology is important for understanding human health and the world around us. There seems to be a lot of skepticism about the importance of basic biology research in the public sector. People have trouble understanding why studies in bacteria, fungi, plants, worms, and flies can lead to important advances in human health. This skepticism can also be found in Congress, which ultimately decides how much money goes toward biomedical research through the NIH and the NSF. So it is beyond important to translate why basic research is essential and why the public, the taxpayers, should care about funding this work.
I’ve been interested in science for a very long time. I studied Biochemistry in college, spent a year at the NIH doing research in the bacteria, E. coli, and then attended graduate school at the University of California, San Francisco where I researched microtubule dynamics in a cell line derived from the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. I currently am Director of iBioSeminars, an NSF/NIGMS open-access online collection of videos by scientists. Through this job I get to meet all sorts of scientists, from the Nobel Laureate to the graduate student, all of whom are very passionate about science and want people to understand why it’s important. I hope to share some of their stories in this blog as well.