Applied in: Winter 2013
University Offers: Imperial College, King's College, UCL, Bath, York
Two years ago, when an expert from the French National Centre for Scientific Research gave us a presentation of her works in molecular biology during our optional class of Scientific Exploration, it struck me that whilst planets, galaxies and space exert a profound fascination for most people, we can explore an equally complex universe through the lens of a microscope. We have so much to learn from cells, DNA and genes, no need to look so far away into larger notions that are literally beyond our full comprehension. Since we started studying in depth the general theme of biological sciences in class, I cannot see which other subject could fascinate me to the point of being ready to spend at least the next five years of my life studying it, especially the notions linked to genetics. Understanding how little fragments of acid combine to make a human being happen is incredible, and the lessons based on a mixture of documents, software and observation to infer about how events such as the synthesis of proteins or the transmission of a specific gene happen are especially stimulating. The only aspect of these lessons I dislike is my teacher always starting to explain some complex aspect of the topic then interrupting himself because "it's not on the syllabus", and it is by furthering my studies in this domain that I plan to satisfy my unanswered curiosity.
Reading through Eberhard Passarge's "Colour Atlas of Genetics" has already offered me some deeper knowledge of more complex genetic subjects, principally the transition from a gene to a protein. Discovering that this process which seemed so simple was divided into three precise steps (transcription, splicing and translation) in eukaryotic cells sparked my interest. Furthermore, the absence of splicing in prokaryotic cells surprised me since we do not refer to these cells in our lessons, I ignored the possible differences between the genetic mechanisms of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. Understanding that this difference was explained by the absence of introns in the latter's genes led to more interrogations which I have yet not been able to answer. I hope in a few years to be able to answer all the questions I ask myself by becoming a researcher specialised in genetics, or to use the use the knowledge I will have acquired to contribute to forensic investigations.
Apart from genetics, the main interests I have in biological sciences are the organisation and structure of cells, as well as the actions they are able to undertake. These subjects are actually all linked together, since the genes code the proteins which in turn affect a particular function of the cell, the latter then able to play a specific role in the organism. The fact that our body integrates this complex internal micrometric structure which dictates its conduct is just plainly fascinating. Studying genetics can therefore give me a better comprehension of cellular biology and vice-versa, my two main interests hence closely related in their learning.
My two main extra scholar hobbies are badminton and cinema. I've been practicing the former for a few years now, and find it especially helpful to clear my head from the pressure of exams whilst having a good time with friends every week and staying healthy. The latter is a more recent interest which I undertake when time is available to open my mind to different concepts, or simply to occasionally take a break from reality during an hour and a half.
The desire for understanding is my first, strongest motivation to enrol myself in a course related to genetics. I truly believe university will offer me the knowledge I seek in this topic especially, and complete it with other information relevant to the theme of biological sciences.