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Peer Review Essay

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The purpose of this report is to describe a peer-reviewed journal article that has been identified from a primary literature source. I chose to perform a search through Pubmed based on the enzyme Catalase, reasoning that it should deepen my understanding of the enzyme allocated to my BABS1201 laboratory group. In the end, I was unable to find any primary literature sources that would help with the assignment but I did find an article that I thought would be appropriate. The journal article I chose is titled Serum albumin alters the expression of iron-controlled genes in Pseudomonas aeruginosa from the peer-reviewed journal, Microbiology. The over-arching field of study which the article falls under is Microbiology (there was a small clue in the title of the journal). Microbiology is the area of science concerned with the study of microorganisms, usually with a focus on diseases and infectious microbes. I found that there was some helpful information tags on the publishers’ webpage and noted that this article was classified under “cell and molecular biology of microbes”. After reading the article a few times I found that there were a number of sub-disciplines covered in the journal article, such as microorganism genetics, pathology. Genetics covers the organism’s ‘blue-prints’ and pathology is the study of disease.

The Microbiology journal has been published monthly by The Society for General Microbiology since 1947. It is an international, peer-reviewed journal with ten editors and 80 associate editors and publishes primary research and reviews. They offer a very quick turn-around with submitted papers being reviewed in approximately four-weeks and publication a week after acceptance which I think ensures relevancy and timeliness and is a great resource for the international scientific community and academic institutions which rely on its information. The Society for General Microbiology is primarily a group for scientists in all fields of Microbiology, founded in the United Kingdom, it is the largest Microbiology society in Europe and publishes key academic journals and holds forums and conferences around the world for communication and development of the field. The stakeholders of the society might be healthy professionals, students, teachers, policy makers and journalists.

The purpose of the study is to validate or repudiate the hypotheses of the researchers through experiment. From what I have been able to determine, the researchers have proposed that the most common plasma protein in mammals plays a critical role in determining how aggressive a specific bacterium will be in the early stages of infection. I had difficulty comprehending the second part of the stated purpose (“enhancing the expression of iron-controlled genes through a Fur-independent mechanism that is not related to albumin-associated iron.”). It seems to suggest that the hosts’ plasma proteins might manipulate the bacteria’s genes independently of the FUR (ferric uptake regulator) but without using the plasma protein associated iron, which makes it sound like this is against popular theory. Under the results headings, there are six highly descriptive statements which led me to think that six clear conclusions were made as a result of the experiments.

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