MadSci Network: Medicine

Re: Aloe vera affect on cell proliferation

Date: Wed Sep 22 09:30:22 2004
Posted By: Sarah Tegen, Grad student, Molecular and Cell Biology, UC-Berkeley
Area of science: Medicine
ID: 1095804641.Me

Great Question.  It sounds like this is for a science project, so I don't 
want to give away all the answers.  Here are some things to think about:  
What kinds of cells would you like to test the growth on?  Do you want to 
test this in human/animal cells, a simple eukaryote like yeast, or a 
prokaryote like bacteria?  Why would you want to choose a particular type 
of cell?  

Once you've picked the kind of cells you'd like to work with, what do you 
need to grow them?  What kinds of nutrition do cells need?  

Your cells are growing, and now you need to test the aloe vera juice.  Do 
you think that cells can grow only in aloe vera juice, or do they need 
other kinds of nutrition too?  How would you determine if aloe vera is 
toxic (ie kills) cells?  How much aloe vera would be safe to use on the 

How do you measure if your cells are growing?  Can you count them?  With a 
microscope?  Must you quantitate the growth, or can it be qualitative?

If you get one result in one experiment, are you confident it would be 
like that in all experiments?  Do you think that the experiment must be 

Please feel free to email me directly ( if you'd like 
to discuss this project more!  It sounds really interesting.

Happy experimenting,
Sarah Tegen

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