Friday, October 06, 2006

rats with superpowers.

today, we measured the effects of amphetamine on rat activity. "it's called an IP injection," said the TA. "intraperitoneal. after you've inserted the needle - just beside the midline, level with the legs - draw out a bit and make sure there is no blood in the syringe. blood means you've hit a vessel or an organ. if you see blood, do not inject." I hung onto the syringe stuck into the belly of the squirming rat and asked, "is this okay?" "I don't know," he responded, "what do you think?" I think I've never given anything live an injection before, you tool.

fortunately, our injection seemed to work. by the end of the lab, not only was the rat still alive, but he had superpowers! or so he thought. he kept running around in circles, trying to climb the walls and standing up so tall he almost fell over backwards. in fact, his measured level of activity was multiples of virtually every other rat in the class. when I last saw him, he was wiggling around on top of his house, trying desperately to squeeze between the bars of his cage.

fly, little rat, fly...

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