lizlop25
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:54 pm
Occupation: Parent

Cancer cells and sugar(sucrose)

Postby lizlop25 » Mon Jun 25, 2018 6:10 pm

Hello, I am a parent of a seventh grader looking for science fair ideas. She is interested in cancer cells. She wants to see the effects of sugar when added to a cancer cell (i.e. does the cancer grow or stay the same?). I think it's a great question. However, we're running into a problem. What do we use to represent cancer and/or the growth? Any ideas on how to conduct an experiment like this? Feedback would be greatly appreciated!

amyc
Site Admin
Posts: 1131
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2008 3:38 pm
Occupation: Science Buddies

Re: Cancer cells and sugar(sucrose)

Postby amyc » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:28 am

Hi - I am sorry that your question didn't get a reply earlier. I talked with scientists at Science Buddies about your question because what your daughter is considering is complicated for a student project. Here is some input that may help as your daughter thinks about what project she will do.

Your daughter does have an interesting and unusual idea. Unfortunately its not really possible to substitute something else for cancer cells and then draw a scientific conclusion. What makes cancer cells unique is that they break many of the rules that most cells follow. This rule breaking (including multiplying when they should not) is what makes them cancerous and leads to disease. So, to figure out the effects of sugar on cancer cells, you really do need some cancer cells in a lab to study. Using other cells that DO follow the rules may simply lead to the wrong conclusion. We realize that getting your hands on cancer cells and growing them is a tall order for a 7th grader though and would need some major lab equipment! Maybe we can break it down though and find some related idea which she can also get excited about. What got her thinking about this idea? Was she interested in cancer? The effects of sugar on biology? Is she keen to try growing cells? Or maybe interested in projects that have direct health tie-ins?

I'll throw out a few ideas as starters.



We would also recommend trying the Topic Selection Wizard to find recommendations of other projects that may be of interest. https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project-ideas

I hope this information helps.

Amy
Science Buddies

lizlop25
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2018 5:54 pm
Occupation: Parent

Re: Cancer cells and sugar(sucrose)

Postby lizlop25 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:11 am

Thank you so much for your response! We will go forward with your recommendation.

amyc
Site Admin
Posts: 1131
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2008 3:38 pm
Occupation: Science Buddies

Re: Cancer cells and sugar(sucrose)

Postby amyc » Wed Jul 25, 2018 11:37 am

I am really glad it was helpful, and I would love to find out what your daughter chooses to explore with her project and where she goes from here.

Amy
Science Buddies


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