Lots and Lots of Refrigerators

So today was our second day of the meeting, and it started off with breakfast and then going to the talks all morning.  One of the talks that was really cool was by Lawrence Lee, in the New and Notable Symposium.  His presentation was on the torque ring of the flagella of bacteria, and how the structure of the ring affected changes in movement, such as quick turns.  Not only was the topic interesting, but Dr. Lee had really awesome and intricate videos to go along with everything he was talking about, making the presentation very clear.  The presentation right after his by Karen Fleming, on a new hydrophobicity scale for proteins incorporated into lipid bilayers, was also really interesting because of how it could relate to the work our lab does.  The presenter was trying to investigate the environment of the membrane around where the incorporated amino acid was located, and either the azide probe or the nitrile probe would be able to give us information about the solvent exposure of the residue.  It’s interesting to see how our work can have applications with other groups’ work as well.

One other talk was by Steven Chu, the secretary of energy of the US.  I was really curious as to what his talk would be about, and it certainly a very unique talk.  He spent the first half talking about biophysics and the RAS pathway, and the second half talking about oil and the energy efficiency versus size of refrigerators.  That part went on for a long time.

It rained for most of the afternoon, so I was very thankful that our hotel actually connected to the convention center.  We went out to dinner and got Ethiopian food, which was definitely a new experience, but one that was really fun.  Tomorrow we present!

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