fBy Joseph Maa: Date: 6/1/2017 Hi everyone just a short post today: I was recently reading a book and it came up that the human diploid genetic code has 6 billion base pairs.  Back in high school and middle school, memorizing the numbers really seemed to be more of a fun fact than pragmatic information. […]Read more "Why Magnitudes Matter"
By: Joseph Maa I’ve recently had the opportunity to sit down with Gordon Pherribo, a current graduate student in the Taga Lab at Berkeley studying vitamin B12 in bacterial communities. Throughout history, bacterial communities have constantly been scrutinized under researchers’ microscopes, but as microscope resolution has improved, researchers increasingly are only limited by their technical knowledge and the […]Read more "Fake Nuclei, Microbial Communities, and Graduate School: A Conversation with Gordon Pherribo (Taga Lab)"
Hi everyone, I’m back! I’ve been on hiatus from writing for about a month, but I’m back at it again. These past few days have been particularly difficult for me, but I’ve found my motivation to write once again. Five days ago, at 11:10 pm, I received multiple frantic missed call messages on my phone. […]Read more "A Year in Retrospection: Realizing My Grandpa’s Legacy and Looking Forward"
Deciphering the Lac Operon Hi all! I’ve been busy trying to plan out the interview articles that will be coming up soon! Just wanted to post a couple of tricky topics on the lac operon since it’s a really tricky, convoluted mess. I’ve uploaded my notes on my understanding of the difficult bits. Hope it […]Read more "Deciphering the Lac Operon"
By: Joseph Maa I just finished reading The Double Helix by James Watson.  The book was an excellent read, even if the author himself has a terrible track record as a human being. For example, in this article by Tom Abate, Tom Abate writes that Sarah Tegen, a graduate student at Berkeley in 2000 recalls her experience at […]Read more "A Review of “The Double Helix” and James Watson"
By: Joseph Maa [Trigger warning] This topic may be sensitive to some readers. I don’t know how to respond when a friend tells me: “I’ve been sexually assaulted.” I don’t want to believe that people have been conditioned to accept sexual assault as perfectly normal, a phenomena of daily life, and a systemic problem that […]Read more "What I Wish I Knew About Sexual Assault"
I finally got around to start reading this book after the recommendation by Frank Huang, some three or four years ago now. It’s been everything I’ve expected- the dreariness and fear of living under The Ministries, the constant vigilance of Big Brother, and the orthodoxy and Winston’s (the main character) struggle to make sense of […]Read more "1984"
There is a war being waged inside your body, at this very moment. Cells, mutated beyond recognition, have become cancerous, only to be targeted by your immune system for destruction. Unfortunately, some of these cells go unnoticed, for some reason or another, and proliferate into the disease we know today as cancer. At the same […]Read more "Cancer and the “Bad Luck” Problem"
Hey everyone, Joseph here with something a bit different. I borrowed my friend Leo Chen’s microphone and decided that I’d try to sing a song that I’ve really enjoyed from Ed Sheeran’s most recent album: Supermarket Flowers. Scroll to the bottom if you just want the link to hear my off-tune singing. Unfortunately, for those […]Read more "Supermarket Flowers"
Hi everyone, Joseph here. Today I wanted to address the idea of stress from a fresh perspective, one that clarifies stress as both a pathology (disease), and internal injury. However, my ultimate goal in writing this article is to address a systemic, pervasive mindset that plagues my own mindset and that of almost all of my […]Read more "Rethinking Stress: A Conceptual Framework"