Scientific Method in Today's World (Panda Sweet taste) Essay example

Submitted By shawnbear
Words: 921
Pages: 4

GIANT PANDAS SWEET TASTE PERCEPTION

In this paper we will review two or more news articles or web sites concerning the scientific method as applied to a study done to ascertain if Giant Panda have sweet taste perception. Then we will look at data from an accredited science journal. This paper will discuss the experiment and lay out the individual steps of the scientific process used in the study. The basic understanding of data they gathered will be discussed and what conclusions they came to will be conveyed.
The first website I looked at Eurekalert was well laid out. It gave the meat of the story without going into any of the really technical details. I found the subject to be portrayed well and felt like it was unbiased. It told the story of Dr. Peihua Jiang and her team. They were attempting to ascertain whether or not sweet taste perception was present in the Giant Panda whose diet consisted mostly of bamboo. It told of the reasons why the scientists at Monell wanted to get this information as well as a rough description of the processes that they used to get their results. The results they got were described in brief and the results were that Giant Pandas did indeed have sweet taste perception. They lead us to believe that their research could save endangered species. For the study they used 8 Giant Pandas and bowls of sweetened water. The pandas drank over a liter of the sweetened water in the timed test of the study and barely touched the unsweetened water. They also made sure to credit some of the other scientists associated with this project. The second article from the science daily website was a carbon copy of the eurekalert website. In fact every publication I found was for better or worse the same. All the articles gave a general understanding of the experiment. They each attempted to convey the desire to help save species whom are endangered. The Plosone website source was very detailed and fraught with confusing calculations. The information was laid out well and was completely comprehensive. It detailed the question asked “Would Giant Pandas have lost their sweet taste perception given their diet of bamboo? Which to humans has no sweet taste.” They discussed how they researched other similar studies which led to their desire to do this study. They constructed two competing hypotheses. They hypothesized that as plant-eating mammals, they should have a well-developed sweet taste system; however, as animals that do not normally consume plants with simple sugars, they may have lost sweet taste function, as has occurred in strict carnivores. They investigated how the giant panda responds to various compounds known to be sweet to humans, using both behavioral taste testing and the heterologous expression of the giant panda sweet taste receptor, and correlated their sweet taste behavior to receptor structure and function. They used the same approach that others had used to generate mixed-species human-mouse sweet taste receptor pairs, which helped determine the monomer that is required for receptor sensitivity toward non-caloric human-specific sweeteners. They had to clone the genes that they needed to use for this study. The analysis of their data from the research showed Giant pandas avidly consumed and strongly preferred most natural sugars, showing preferences for each of the six natural sugars tested (at two concentrations) over water. Notably, giant pandas appeared to show high sensitivity to fructose, avidly preferring even a moderate concentration in all testing sessions, they finished the entire 1 liter of fructose solution and drank very little water. In contrast, giant pandas only modestly preferred galactose, even at the higher concentration. Giant…