At the Bench: A Laboratory Navigator

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CSHL Press, 2005 - Science - 465 pages
3 Reviews
At the Bench is the unique and hugely successful handbook for living and working in the laboratory, an essential aid to understanding basic lab techniques and how research groups work at a human level. In this newly revised edition, chapters have been rewritten to accommodate the impact of computer technology and the Internet, not only on the acquisition and analysis of data, but also on its organization and presentation. Alternatives to the use of radiation have been expanded, and figures and illustrations have been redrawn to reflect changes in laboratory equipment and procedures.

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User Review  - amarcobio - LibraryThing

This is a 'everything you wanted to know but never dared to ask' kind of book, for molecular biology laboratories. It was particularly useful for me, and it may be a good guide for students facing for the first time lab work. Read full review

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An invaluable (no, seriously, I'd feel lame and blind if not for this book) for anyone coming anywhere near a biology laboratory, especially the wide eyed, confused, scared student with a nagging sensation of "so what do I do now?".


General Lab Organization and Procedures 3
Getting Started and Staying Organized
Freezing and Storage of Cells
CO Incubators and Tanks
DNA RNA and Protein

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Page 77 - I have often had cause to feel that my hands are cleverer than my head. That is a crude way of characterizing the dialectics of experimentation. When it is going well, it is like a quiet conversation with Nature. One asks a question and gets an answer; then one asks the next question, and gets the next answer. An experiment is a device to make Nature speak intelligibly. After that one has only to listen.
Page 257 - A Short Course in Bacterial Genetics. A Laboratory Manual and Handbook for Escherichia coli and Related Bacteria.
Page 420 - The lowest temperature at which a liquid gives off sufficient vapor to form an ignitable mixture with air near the surface of the liquid is called the flash point.
Page 126 - Ethidium bromide is a powerful mutagen and is moderately toxic. Gloves should be worn when working with solutions that contain this dye. After use, these solutions should be decontaminated by one of the methods described in Appendix E.
Page 126 - Phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride (PMSF) is extremely destructive to the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract, the eyes, and the skin. It may be fatal if inhaled, swallowed, or absorbed through the skin. In case of contact, immediately flush eyes or skin with copious amounts of water and discard contaminated clothing.
Page 165 - Using Antibodies: A Laboratory Manual. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbor, NY, USA.
Page 126 - Stir vigorously on a magnetic stirrer. Adjust the pH to 8.0 with NaOH (-20 g of NaOH pellets <!>). Dispense into aliquots and sterilize by autoclaving.
Page 128 - ... at -20°C. As needed, remove the phenol from the freezer, allow it to warm to room temperature, and then melt it at 68°C. Add hydroxyquinoline to a final concentration of 0.1%. This compound is an antioxidant, a partial inhibitor of RNase, and a weak chelator of metal ions (Kirby 1956). In addition, its yellow color provides a convenient way to identify the organic phase. 2. To the melted phenol, add an equal volume of buffer (usually 0.5 M Tris-Cl [pH 8.0] at room temperature).

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About the author (2005)

Kathy Barker received her B.A. in Biology and English, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Microbiology, from various branches of the University of Massachusetts. She did her postdoctoral work in the laboratory of Viral Oncology at Rockefeller University and was an Assistant Professor in the Laboratory of Cell Physiology and Immunology at Rockefeller University. She is now based in Seattle, where she writes and gives workshops on various aspects of running a lab.

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