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Beth Kenkel

Beth Kenkel is currently a research scientist in the Department of Laboratory Medicine at the University of Washington. She is particularly interested in science communication and in vitro diagnostics. Follow Beth on twitter @ElizabethKenkel.

Recent Posts

Delivery Methods for Generating iPSCs

Posted by Beth Kenkel on Apr 17, 2018 9:37:57 AM

The field of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) has been around for 10 years. In that time, scientists have used almost all available approaches for generating iPSCs. The generation of iPSCs is relatively simple in concept: ectopically express a cocktail of stem cell reprogramming factors and wait for cells to de-differentiate. However it’s difficult, especially as a newbie reprogrammer, to decide which method to use. This post provides a brief overview of reprogramming methods with the goal of helping readers choose a strategy suited to their research.

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Topics: Stem Cells

RANbodies: Reporter Nanobody Fusions

Posted by Beth Kenkel on Apr 10, 2018 8:56:44 AM

Antibodies are a go-to tool for detecting a protein of interest in cells and tissues. Although antibody production is well established, it’s also a process that’s difficult for individual labs to complete. The nanobody based RANbody platform from the Sanes Lab overcomes this limitation and allows for the flexible design and small scale production of antibodies.

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Topics: Plasmid Technology

Plasmids 101: Secondary Nanobody Toolbox

Posted by Beth Kenkel on Feb 27, 2018 9:04:41 AM

Western blots. ELISAs. Immunofluorescence. What do all of these techniques have in common? They all typically require secondary antibodies, frequently of the mouse or rabbit variety. While antibodies certainly aren’t “broken,” their production does require continued animal sacrifice. Could there be an alternative method for immunodetection? Enter the Görlich lab and their anti-mouse and -rabbit IgG secondary nanobodies toolbox. Nanobodies are like tiny antibodies which work just as well, if not better, than antibodies for all of the above listed molecular techniques, but they can also be expressed in bacteria and extracted with common protein purification methods. Read on to learn more about nanobodies and how their structure and function compare to IgG antibodies, as well as how to produce them for use in your lab.

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Topics: Hot Plasmids, Plasmids 101

Oh, The Places You Can Go: Careers in Science Communication - Writing for a Research Institute

Posted by Beth Kenkel on Feb 2, 2018 10:20:48 AM

In this post of the Careers in Science Communication blog series, you’ll hear from Susan Keown, a staff writer at the non-profit Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

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Topics: Career, Science Communication, SciComm Careers

PEI Calculator for Planning AAV Packaging Transfections

Posted by Beth Kenkel on Jan 23, 2018 9:04:28 AM

As the saying goes, “failing to plan is planning to fail.” Preparation is a key step to any experiment and can help prevent future headaches. To help you plan PEI transfections for AAV packaging, considering using this PEI Calculator. AAV packaging typically requires transfecting three plasmids at specific molar ratios. To get these ratios right, you need to do a few calculations. This calculator can do the math for you and it’s simple to make adjustments for the type of tissue culture dish and number of dishes used. Here’s to making AAV packaging a little easier!

Click here to download the PEI calculator for AAV packaging

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Topics: Viral Vectors

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