BME100 s2016:Group8 W1030AM L1

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Name: Abdulrahman Hassan M Alamri
Name: Eric Barrientos
Name: Ethan Blank
Name: Melanie Parke
Name: Vanessa Sanders
Name: Erin Sussex


Independent and Dependent Variables

The independent variable in this experiment is the amount of inflammatory protein given to the subject tested. This is because the protein affects whether or not inflammation is present, therefore it is the independent variable.

The dependent variable in this experiment is the amount of inflammation present after the protein is introduced. Whether or not inflammation is present depends on the amount of the inflammatory protein given, therefore making inflammation the dependent variable.

Experimental Design

This experiment involves 5 groups: a control group given a sugar pill, and 4 groups given pills of 10mg, 8mg, 5mg, and 2mg of LPS, one dosage per group. The results from the control group will help eliminate changes in all groups not caused by the drug. The group administer 10mg of LPS is used as a baseline because previous studies have shown that this dosage is effective. If this study shows differently, further investigation into the experiment design may be required. The remaining groups are administered decreasing doses of the drug to determine the minimum effective dosage.

All subjects are between 65 and 80 years of age because this drug targets the elderly population. This is a large enough age range to ensure the drug affects the entire target population and to account for any variability in effectiveness based on the subject's age.

Number of subjects per group
Each group contains 8 people, for a total of 40 people in the study. This sample size should produce sufficiently reliable and consistent data while keeping costs to a minimum.

Subject Selection

All subjects that participate in the experiment must present some form of inflammation, so that the results of the drug on inflammation may be accurately tested. If a participant does not show signs of inflammation before the drug is given, the effect of the drug cannot be accurately recorded. In addition, all subjects must be in the designated age group of 65-80 years old, so that all subjects exhibit closeness in age and age does not become a confound variable. Each participant must exhibit a Body Mass Index (BMI) between 19 and 25, so that the differing body types of the subjects do not become a confound variable. Anyone who does not fit the criteria of age, body mass index, and presence of inflammation is excluded from this study.

In order to randomize the experiment, a group of 120 viable applicants, 60 male and 60 female, who fit all criteria are presented. Of these 120, 40 participants, 20 male and 20 female, will be randomly chosen by a random number generator to participate. By randomly picking the 40 participants, it is insured that all ages, weights, heights, and genders are included and tested in this study. Next, the 40 participants are then randomly assigned into one of the five test groups, with each group given 4 females and 4 males. One of these test groups will be given a placebo to establish a control.

By using randomization and arbitrary assignment of participants to groups, bias is reduced to a minimum, since the experimenters do not personally chose group assignment.

Sources of Error and Bias

If any subjects are ill during the experiment it will bias a positive result. Subjects with any sort of infection, or who’ve recently had surgery should be excluded. Subjects with immunological disorders will bias a negative result. Subjects with low functioning immune systems due to illness should also be excluded. Bias could be given to dosages above or below 10 mg so a range should be tested. Enough time should be given for the patient to develop inflammation, but not so much that it goes down. All patients should be tested in the same time frame after dosage is given. Patients should be monitored during the experiment to assure their condition does not change drastically in a way that might affect the experiment. Multiple blood samples from each subject should be tested to assure accurate measurement of inflammation.