>October 01 2001

>We have been in school for six weeks now and it has gone like a whirlwind. The last week has been very tranquil despite the pressures of upcoming exams. The weather has been so beautiful that I have spent a couple of days lying in the grass under a tree while studying and eating lunch. I have got it made!

Biochemistry is running smoothly. We had our second exam on Friday. I did not do as well as I did on my first test but still have a solid B average. A topic on our last test was cell membranes the way materials are transported across membranes for protein synthesis. Many of our cells are like tiny manufacturing plants that are running 24 hours a day. There is constantly chemical and electrical activity going on at the cellular level. And the amazing thing is that we have figured so much of it out. Just think about it – the neuron cells of our brains have assembled themselves in such a way that they can “know” what they are doing. That is an incredible idea to me! For our next exam we are starting to get into a subject that has always fascinated me – DNA coding. With the mapping of the human genome in the last year this topic is hotter than ever. We will be doing amazing things in the next few decades with our new knowledge.

In Anatomy we are doing the thorax and abdomen. We had to dissect the heart and lungs out of our cadavers and examine them in detail. Now if I ever threaten to rip somebody’s lungs out, I can speak from experience! Healthy lungs look and feel really cool even in the cadavers. The texture is so pleasing to me that I could hardly stop playing with them. On the other hand, diseased lungs are some of the most disgusting things you can look at. I don’t see how anyone who has ever seen the lungs of someone with emphysema could smoke cigarettes! One cadaver in the lab had lungs which had pretty much liquefied. Our second anatomy exam is a week from today and I definitely need to eat, drink and sleep this stuff for the next seven days to recover from that first test!

About Marcus Lee

Child Neurologist
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