Answer the question you selected for profile question 1 here (300 words):
As an undergraduate I had a lab job assisting a doctoral student who needed to isolate DNA from the root apical meristems of pea plants. We did not have polymerase chain reaction technology to amplify small amounts of DNA in those days, so he needed very large numbers of root tips to get sufficient DNA for an experiment. Based on my classwork and some experiments some other students in our lab had done, I thought I could use elevated temperature to significantly increase the number of cells in these meristems, and therefore reduce the number of root tips we would need to collect to get enough meristem DNA. The experiment was pretty much a failure with respect to its hypothesis and objective, but it serenipitously revealed a lot of surprising effects that elevated temperature had on the development of pea roots. This ultimately led to my own doctoral dissertation research project and subsequent life's work.