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19 June 2012 @ 09:49 am
This is beyond awesome!  
15-Year Old Kid Invents Early Cancer Detection Tool
By Amanda Crum

In news that will probably make you feel like a worthless lump of a human being, a 15-year old high-school Freshman from Maryland has created a paper test strip for detecting cancer in its very early stages, and is being hailed as the nation’s next great scientific mind.

Jack Andraka says he got the idea for the test strip–which is dipped in a solution of carbon nanotubes coated in antibodies that are designed to attract a specific virus or protein–while sitting in Biology class, and shopped his idea around to more than 200 researchers before finding one at Johns Hopkins University who would let him use their lab for his studies. What he found was that the paper strips were 100% accurate, but more than that, they targeted cancer cells way before the disease would become invasive. Because Andraka used pancreatic cancer as his main focus of study, those findings were of particular interest, because pancreatic cancer has an alarming 5% survival rate. However, ovarian and lung cancer can also be detected with the strips because of their reliable biomarkers.

The good news doesn’t stop there. These paper strips are thousands of times less expensive than the current tests used for detection and around 400 times more sensitive, meaning doctors can seek out dangerous cells faster, cheaper, and more accurately than ever before.

Andraka has already won the prestigious grand prize at the Intel International Science And Engineering Fair and has presented his findings at a TED Talk, which is kind of a big deal in the science world (if you’re unfamiliar with the Ted Talks, look them up. Each one is led by a different person on a different topic, but they are all extremely interesting. You can find them streaming on Netflix, among other places). He’s also patented his discovery, and says if things go well he will be working on starting his own company soon for further development. High school, apparently, will have to wait.

(Video of grand prize win behind the cut (I can't watch it now, but I hear it's adorable.)

Source + Another article with more information: Wait, Did This 15-Year-Old From Maryland Just Change Cancer Treatment?

OMG! THIS IS AMAZING! Kudos to the youngin' of course, but the fact that this could help so many lives is just wonderful.
Olgadreamingahead on June 19th, 2012 06:20 pm (UTC)
Brilliant human being. Thanks for sharing!
Arabian: Emily & Nolan01arabian on June 20th, 2012 12:19 pm (UTC)
I know right. I love reading that humanity can still make us go BOOYAH!
kilodaltonkilodalton on June 19th, 2012 09:02 pm (UTC)
That is AWESOME!!!
Arabian: Katherine01arabian on June 20th, 2012 12:20 pm (UTC)
Made me so happy to read.
Florencia: Imagineflorencia7 on June 19th, 2012 10:44 pm (UTC)
That's truly amazing! Thank you for sharing such great, promising news :)
Arabian: Elena02arabian on June 20th, 2012 12:20 pm (UTC)
It really is, and gives me hope for humanity. :)
sourisvhosourisvho on June 19th, 2012 11:23 pm (UTC)
Really awesome. Thanks for sharing!
Arabian: Alaric01arabian on June 20th, 2012 12:20 pm (UTC)
I know, right?! You're welcome. :)
hiddeneloisehiddeneloise on June 20th, 2012 01:50 am (UTC)
Wow. God, I hope this gets implemented. And fast. I mean, it's an amazing kid, and I applaud him, but I also know how fucking slow the industry works, not to mention all sorts of interests at play that have nothing to do with prevention and cure.

But regardless, this is amazing.
Arabian: Logan_Hiarabian on June 20th, 2012 12:21 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm sure there will be things involved down the road that make us want to scream in frustration, but the potential is, as you said, amazing!
Frust-sheep: sheep: *aww*frust_sheep on June 20th, 2012 11:43 am (UTC)
THX for sharing. That are AWESOME news! :)
Arabian: Kermitarabian on June 20th, 2012 12:21 pm (UTC)
Isn't it, though? Loved reading it.
she was a work in progress.: matt bomerdreamer_98 on June 20th, 2012 01:35 pm (UTC)
The bigger part of me thinks that is an awesome invention and will probably change a lot of people's lives for the better.

The small, petty part of me envies young, genius kids like this who make me feel inadequate. I don't even remember what I was doing at 15.

Edited at 2012-06-20 01:35 pm (UTC)
Arabian: WhiteCollararabian on June 20th, 2012 01:44 pm (UTC)
LOL! Yeah, well, kid's doing something at 15 that nothing I ever do will equate, so I'm trying to focus on the bigger part of me. Really, though, yeah, this is just awesome.