Even if I can't get these blots to work, it's possible that the antibody may be able to detect my protein in histological specimens. If the blots fail me now, I will probably move on to immunohistochemistry to see what I can see. I've done a lot of that in the past. I have to say, though, I enjoy the precision of the more purely molecular techniques. Messing around with little pieces of tissue and mounting them on a slide is more annoying than working with nitrocellulose membranes. Although, I think for an ideal project I'd be doing a little of both -- studying protein/protein interactions, but also studying anatomical characteristics of the protein (or with mutations of that protein). Maybe even doing some behavioral studies or something, for the big picture. It's rewarding to get a super clean result in molecular biology, but it's also rewarding to actually see what's going on in an animal, either by looking at a representative brain section or observing a behavioral phenotype. Or doing physiology, I suppose, although I have absolutely no experience in that, and it seems like most e-phys people specialize in doing that and little else, because the technique is so involved.
Classes are in full swing, now. I had my first quiz in Cellular and Developmental Neuroscience this week, and both of my weekly seminars have started up, too. There are also lab meetings to attend, and meetings with my rotation adviser to plan. With all the other stuff going on I find myself working "late" (past 6 PM) several days a week, while a lot of my classmates seem to spend hardly any time at the lab. I guess it works out, though, since my lab time involves a lot of waiting around and doing other things. Even though I have to be physically present, I don't have to spend the entire day standing at my bench.