Gaby S.
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2007 1:02 pm
Occupation: Student

I want a challenging biochemistry project

Postby Gaby S. » Fri Oct 05, 2007 1:14 pm

My name is Gaby, and I want to ask if you can give me some ideas for a biochemistry project. I am interested in DNA and comparing protein structures, and this year, I wish to have a challenging project so that I can at the very least make it to the Regional Science Fair in Indiana. I want to be finished with the project by January 16, for the school science fair on the 26th. I very badly want to win my middle school science fair! I would be grateful for any ideas and information you could give me. Thanks. :)
"Demolish the bridges behind you...then there is no choice but to move forward."
- Firdtjof Nansen

Sareena Avadhany
Former Expert
Posts: 163
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2005 10:15 pm

Postby Sareena Avadhany » Sat Oct 06, 2007 7:15 pm

Hi Gaby,

Choosing a project is, in my opinion, one of the toughest parts of the entire science fair experience. Science Buddies has a trove of potential science projects you can use as a start to your experiment. Please visit: http://sciencebuddies.org/mentoring/register_guest.php
for the topic selection wizard to help guide you in your decision making process.

You definitely want to have an idea of what you want to study. You mentioned biochemistry, but be more specific. What in biochemistry is interesting to you? If you know what that is, then that's a great start.

Once you have started, you may want to post in the physical science forum - mentors answer questions related to chemistry.

Good luck,
Sareena

Scronjsn11
Former Expert
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 9:54 pm

Postby Scronjsn11 » Mon Oct 08, 2007 11:33 am

You could get some ideas on a search engine...once you find out what you want to do your experiment on, you can come back here and we will be happy to answer your questions. Good luck with the search!

jeffreyshu
Former Expert
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 9:36 am

Finding a project to do

Postby jeffreyshu » Thu Oct 11, 2007 8:19 am

I'm glad you are trying to pick a difficult subject to do a science fair project. You mentioned in your post that you were interested in DNA and comparing protein structures. From my understanding, to do projects at the molecular level requires some expensive scientific materials such as an electrophoresis gel and a lot of non-common chemicals to cut and combine DNA and proteins. Furthermore, to explain to judges on what you did is difficult unless you build models of the DNA or proteins that you were working which can get really abstracted from what is actually happened. Last year, I saw someone do an experiment on fluorescent bacteria and although I'm sure his experiment was successful, it was difficult to see the fluorescence because of the surrounding light around the presentation floor and because most of his bacteria died off by the time the judging started.

My opinion on how to win a science fair is to focus on originality, dogged application of the scientific method, and a clear presentation.

If you are interested in biochemistry in general, try to think of biochemical processes that occur commonly in everyday life such as rising bread, fermenting grapes, and photosynthesis. Most of these everyday processes can be put into a science fair project because of the ease in obtaining materials and observing the processes. Hope that helps you in getting some ideas for your project.

TroyPercival
Former Expert
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Sep 18, 2007 7:11 pm

Biochemical reaction on microorganism

Postby TroyPercival » Sun Oct 14, 2007 11:10 pm

Hello Gaby, had you consider doing your biochemistry project on microorganism? In a typical diagnostic laboratory, we perform varies biochemical testing to try to identify different bacteria. You might be able to come up with an interesting science fair project on microorganism biochemical testing if you look into it.

Michael

adance
Former Expert
Posts: 137
Joined: Tue Sep 18, 2007 5:06 pm
Occupation: science journalist

Postby adance » Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:00 am

Hi Gaby,

not sure if this will help you or not, it might be too advanced for you, but I thought I'd mention it since you said you're interested in protein structure--which is a very hot topic, but also very complicated, to be honest I don't quite understand it myself.

The Protein Data Bank is the storage for all the protein structures that scientists figure out. It's at pdb.org, look on the left side menu for the "Education" tab, which might help you learn what the website is about. If you could learn how to use the website, you might be able to come up with some sort of bioinformatics project where you survey proteins and make comparisons, looking for patterns. Then the only equipment you'd need is a computer and the know-how.

good luck
Amber Dance
Science Buddy


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