BME100 s2016:Group16 W1030AM L1
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LAB 1 WRITE-UP
Independent and Dependent Variables
The independent variable, or the variable that will be manipulated in this study, is the dosage of inflammotin agent provided to each subject. The dependent variable, or the variable that is changed due to the manipulation of the independent variable, is the change in inflammotin protein levels in each subject.
We will select our subjects by placing adds in newspapers, magazines, and on the internet for individuals that want their inflammatory levels to be tested. This will bring a good group of random people that volunteer to participate in our study. The individuals that test positive for a deficiency may or may not be selected for the experiment. The individuals that are selected will be at random. This group will be the most diverse from being healthy to unhealthy and from 65 years old on up. The volunteers should not have taken lipopolysaccharide before to eliminate a bias. There will be one group out of the six groups that will be a control and the remaining five groups will be experimental.
Sources of Error and Bias
One of the largest sources of error in research studies investigating new drugs or medication is the placebo effect, which describes the idea that when a patient knows or the he or she is or is not receiving the actual drug (instead of the placebo) they will act differently or provide biased observations and reports of the effect of the drug. Additionally, researchers can effects the results of the study if they are aware of which treatment the patients are receiving by being biased in their own observations and selective in the data they choose to report. The best way to control for both of these biases is a double-blind study in which neither the subjects or the researchers are aware of which patients are getting the placebo and which are getting the actual drug.
Another source of error could be level of activity in each subject. Subjects who are more or less active would have different levels of inflammation and their bodies will react to and metabolize drugs differently. This error should be accounted for by randomly assigning subjects in their groups. This randomization should provide a range of activity levels of the subjects in each group. Additionally, subjects should be asked about their activity level when they are being screened initially to eliminate any outliers (i.e. someone who runs marathons and has an extremely high metabolism).