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Algebra in Cell Culture

April 28th, 2016 by Math Tricks | No Comments | Filed in Algebra

Cell culture is a technique used by many biological laboratories the world over.  Typically, cell culture requires a growth medium composed of fetal calf serum (FBS) and a specialized base medium.  It is not unusual to utilize basic algebra when making a batch of growth medium.  Here is a scenario where algebra can be used to solve a problem in making a batch of growth medium.

cell culture medium

Algebra is used in cell culture

Sally has only 62 milliliters (ml) of the very expensive base medium “Peabody Sassy” (yea – I made that up, so don’t bother Goggling it!) left.  Her growth medium is composed of Peabody Sassy and 10% FBS.  If she uses all 62 ml of Peabody Sassy (she does not want to waste any, after all), how many ml of FBS will she need to make up her growth medium?

Please enter your solutions in the message box below, and be sure to show how you arrived at it.  Sure, you can get a good estimate by trial and error, but you can get an exact answer (and faster!) by using algebra.



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