KCL Science

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Randall – A day in the life

SPECIAL BROADCAST: Single Cell Biophysics meeting in Taipei

This week, me and a couple of others blogged for the biophysical society from the Single Cell Biophysics meeting in Taipei. Here’s a run down, with links to the blogs:

The first section was about imaging techniques, including structured illumination from Suliana Manley in bacteria, and full automation of super resolution/single molecule microscopy from Masahiro Ueda. Read all about it!

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A day in the life (3rd year PhD Student)

After a long time “A day in the life” series is back! As most of you know the series is about telling to everyone a classic day for a PhD Student in the Randall Division at the Kings College. Today I will describe my a day in the life during a normal Wednesday. 

Hope that you will enjoy. And remember if you are a PhD Student of the Randall and you want to write about your day please contact me

Federico (

6:30 am

Alarm goes off. Snooze. Snooze for the second time, maybe third….But I know that I need to stand up and be ready for breakfast.

6:55 am

Prepared breakfast. Nice bowl of yogurt and cereal. A glass of orange juice and a mug of coffee (My personal drug).


8:15 am

I am the first in the office. So, as usual I open the door, switch on the lights (yes it is still dark) and check my planning of the day. After that I am going in the lab and it is lovely to see how the light of the sun just start to enter through the windows. Some time early morning are really nice.


8:45 am

First thing to do is check my cells in the incubator in the “TC” (Tissue Culture). It is the room where we normally feed and growth the cells (i.e. Cultured).

And already this is a bad day. I had some fungus infection in my flask (see picture above). Only solution is bin all the cells and all the solution that I have used. I do not know from the infection came.

09:45 am

I am doing some cloning to tag a protein with a fluorophore so you can visualise the protein in the cells and take pretty images at the microscope! To do that I need to transfect some bacteria that will express the plasmid with my protein and after that I will extract the plasmid and transect some human cells.


11:00 am

FACS day!! Now I need to move from my office to the Tower in the Guy’s Hospital where there is the FACS facility.

FACS (picture below) is an incredible instrument that allow you to sort cells from a population using different antibody to know how many cells type you have, or you can have information regarding the cell cycle or if they express some antibody.


I am using FACS to do a cell cycle analysis of some cells that are treated with RNAi that leads to a knock-down of some protein that hopefully are related to the cell cycle or cell division.

1:30 am lunch

Time for a lunch break with my colleagues at the Randall. Outside is too cold to have lunch in the courtyard so we will stay inside in the lunch room for some free time.

2:00 pm

And now the “fun” part of the FACS experiment. I need to analyse all the data that I have collected before lunch.



3:30 pm

Now I need a coffee break! (Of course as all the Italians we need coffee J ) Also it is nice to have a chat with friends to relax a little bit.


4:00 pm

And now just before leaving two hours at the Nikon Centre to use the cool Confocal Microscope to take fancy pictures of my cells stained with different antibodies to see proteins inside the cells!!


6:15 pm

Finally the day is over 🙂 ! Friends are waiting for me at the Science Museum (today is the last Wednesday of the month so as always the Science museum is open until 22. It is amazing and full of activity)


9:00 pm

Now dinner. And what I can eat after a full day like that? Pizza of course! I went with the same friends from the museum to Franco Manca for a lovely and cheap pizza!

11:30 pm

Now I am feeling a little bit tired for the long day. My lovely and warm bed is waiting for me!

Written by: Federico Dona’

A day in the life (3rd year PhD Student)

Alarm goes off: it’s time to wake up… already?

I recently started to walk to work, a healthy and cheap alternative to the packed Northern line trains. I quite like changing route every day. I often get lost, but the Shard always shows me the right way to Guy’s Campus.


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A day in the life (2nd year PhD student)

6:45 am

Alarm goes off. Snooze. Snooze again…and so forth for the next half hour. (Could go on for longer, but I know it’s my day in life today, so I’m trying to behave here).

7:15 am

Out of bed, I start with my yoga morning routine. This helps me wake up smoothly. Cook breakfast – today is coconut porridge and some fruits, yummy! Get ready to go and on my way to work.

Continue reading “A day in the life (2nd year PhD student)”

A day in the life (2nd year PhD Student)

Day in Life of a Scientist on Conference

During May I attended the Biointeractomics FEBS-IUBMB Workshop in Seville, Spain.  The conference covered a range of subjects all focusing on how proteins bump into each other and which of these interactions go-one to form a more meaningful bond. Biology, informatics and engineering all meet in both cutting-edge computational and experimental approaches to embrace the multi-disciplinary approach theme of the workshop.

7:20 Wake up in splendid Seville – just the place to satisfy your wanderlust (even if just momentarily!) I made sure to stay over the weekend after the conference just to see the city sights to avoid having to miss any talks.

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A day in the life (2nd year PhD student)

I’m Federico Dona’, a second year PhD student. I’m working with HeLa cells on understanding cytokinesis and I’m trying to find out novel proteins involved in this process. My day usually starts with a nice and warm coffe at home before starting my exciting working day. Today  you can see a normal Thursday of my PhD life. It is not only work and reading but also enjoy the free time that I have.

Click on the link to watch Federico’s day:

Federico’s VLog



A day in the life (1st year-Rotation PhD Student)

06:30 – My running group meets atop Primrose Hill. I love early mornings – I’m so hardcore!

melina Continue reading “A day in the life (1st year-Rotation PhD Student)”

A day in the life (3rd year PhD Student)

07:00 – My alarm goes off! Usually I have another two alarms that go of 15mins apart from each other, but I had watched this video the night before, which explains why snoozing doesn’t actually make waking up any easier and I thought I would give it a go! So I drag myself out of bed and crawl into the shower.

07:30 – I’m just about ready to start the day now, although whether I feel any better getting up on first alarm is…debatable. Anyway, the one thing that always helps is a coffee!


Continue reading “A day in the life (3rd year PhD Student)”

A day in the life (2nd year PhD Student)

My name is Roksana, I’m a 2nd year PhD student working on cardiac muscle proteins. My work is approximately 50% lab and 50% computer-based. My hobbies include playing the violin/viola and circus training….! Here’s a summary of my day:

8:00            Alarm rings­, hit snooze at least 3 times!

Continue reading “A day in the life (2nd year PhD Student)”

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