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All Quotes by author - Bonnie Bassler
" All these bacteria that coat our skin and live in our intestines, they fend off bad bacteria. They protect us. And you can't even digest your food without the bacteria that are in your gut. They have enzymes and proteins that allow you to metabolize foods you eat. "
" As a kid, I loved doing puzzles, solving riddles, and reading mystery books. I also loved animals and always had pets. "
" Bacteria mineralized the rocks; they deposited the iron. They made the geology we see. "
" By weight, you are more human than bacteria, because your cells are bigger, but by numbers, it's not even close. "
" Everybody, as soon as they do a good experiment, their first thought in this lab is, 'That can't be right. I must have screwed it up. What did I do wrong?' And that's the best kind of scientist because they're filled with this self-doubt. And if I'm going to be honest, that's who I am. And it's what drives me. "
" I am lucky because I get to work with the smartest, most creative, and most devoted group of students and postdoctoral fellows imaginable. "
" I called up and said, 'Dad, I won a MacArthur.' My father goes: 'I always thought your sister would win that,' and I said, 'Dad, just say congratulations and keep your private thoughts private.' At that point he laughed, then burst into tears, and it was obvious that he was so happy and proud. "
" In my lab, we are always thinking about how cells, bacterial cells, can talk to each other and then organize themselves into enormous groups that function in unison. "
" I remember the day we found the gene for the inter-species signaling molecule like it was yesterday. We got the gene, and we plugged it into a database. And we immediately saw that this gene was in an amazing number of species of bacteria. It was a huge moment of realization. "
" I think being open-minded about what Nature is trying to tell you is the key to being creative and successful. "
" I think the easiest application to help people understand what quorum sensing is and why it's important to study is to tell them that if we could make the bacteria either deaf or mute, we could create new antibiotics. "
" It's a manic-depressive life. You run in here, you open your incubator, your experiment makes no sense, you think, 'I hate this job.' Then ten minutes later you think, 'Well, now, maybe I'll try this or I'll try that.' You do it because you know there will be an 'a-ha!' day. "
" It's incorrect to think of bacteria as these asocial, single cells. They are individual cells, but they act in communities, exactly the way people do. "
" I want to make a drug. I want the science to be more than imaginary, where I think, 'We're learning these fundamental principles, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.' I think we are doing that, but I want to do something really practical. I want to actually, in my lifetime, help people. "
" Most bacteria aren't bad. We breathe and eat and ingest gobs of bacteria every single moment of our lives. Our food is covered in bacteria. And you're breathing in bacteria all the time, and you mostly don't get sick. "
" Science is difficult and slow no matter who you are. The hours are long, and the glorious 'aha' days come only very infrequently. You have to keep believing that if you put in the hours, those days will indeed come! "
" The goal of scientists is you hope that the thing you're working on is bigger than the thing you're pipetting into that tube at that moment. "
" Think about all kinds of infectious diseases, like mumps or measles or chicken pox. When a virgin population encountered those pathogens, it ravaged the population, and now they're childhood diseases, and eventually they won't even be that. That's our relationship with bacteria, going through time. "
" Think about multicellularity on this Earth. Every living thing originally came from bacteria. So, who do you think made up the rules for how to perform collective behaviors? It had to be the bacteria. "
" We mostly don't get sick. Most often, bacteria are keeping us well. "
" We've all been sick; we're all afraid of infection. I think the easiest application to help people understand what quorum sensing is and why it's important to study is to tell them that if we could make the bacteria either deaf or mute, we could create new antibiotics. "
" What's great about bacteria is you have a surprise every day waiting for you because they're so fast, they grow overnight. "
" When antibiotics became industrially produced following World War II, our quality of life and our longevity improved enormously. No one thought bacteria were going to become resistant. "
" When antibiotics first came out, nobody could have imagined we'd have the resistance problem we face today. We didn't give bacteria credit for being able to change and adapt so fast. "
" You can find bacteria everywhere. They're invisible to us. I've never seen a bacterium, except under a microscope. They're so small, we don't see them, but they are everywhere. "
" You live in intimate association with bacteria, and you couldn't survive without them. "
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