Guest post by Emma Young, a student at Penicuik High School in Midlothian, Scotland, where the final High-sci talk to celebrate Women in Biochemistry in 2013 took place.
On Tuesday the 10 December 2013, Dr Cait MacPhee came to talk about Biological Physics. Cait is a Professor of Biological Physics in the Condensed Matter group of the School of Physics at the University of Edinburgh.
Cait told us about how she has moved about and has been involved in Biology, Chemistry and Physics at one point or another. The focus of her talk was chocolate, we were all rather happy about that! She talked about the protein strings that are found in chocolate and how when they change structure, it affects the taste and texture. For example, if you take chocolate and freeze it just as it begins to melt, the texture will be grainer and it will taste sweeter. This is because the structure of the protein strings has changed.
It was very interesting to learn about the protein strings and the different ways they can be used, but what we also learned, is that even though “everything is a branch of Physics” all the sciences need to work together. Many of the projects Cait has been involved in has required several departments to come together to share ideas and make it a success. We learn that you can start your studies as a Biologist and end up as a Physicist! Who would have thought?