15-year-old develops revolutionary test for cancer

15-year-old develops revolutionary test for cancer

A high-school student from Maryland is changing the course of medicine.
Jack Andraka (external - login to view), 15, recently developed a simple inexpensive test for early-stage pancreatic cancer.

Jack Andraka created a simple dip-stick sensor to test for levels of mesothelin, which is a biomarker for early-stage pancreatic cancer that’s found in blood and urine. The method is similar to diabetic testing strips, utilizing just a pinprick of blood and costing all of three cents to make," Take Part reports (external - login to view).
Andraka's invention won (external - login to view) him Intel's prestigious $75,000 Gordon E. Moore Award this past December at Intel's annual Science and Engineering Fair, the world's largest research and science competition for high-school students.
Current pancreatic cancer-detection methods are "woefully ineffective, (external - login to view)" leaving most cancers undiagnosed until their final stages. By then, it's usually too late for treatment.
"[Andraka's] novel patent-pending sensor has proved to be 28 times faster, 28 times less expensive, and over 100 times more sensitive than current tests," the Daily Mail reports.
Andraka believes his simple detection test would help patients identify the disease at its earliest stages, before it becomes invasive, and possibly boosting survival rates of the deadly cancer to "close to 100 per cent (external - login to view)."
"Andraka created his potentially revolutionary pancreatic cancer detection tool at nearby Johns Hopkins University, though he does sometimes tinker in a small basement lab at the family’s house in leafy Crownsville, Maryland, where a homemade particle accelerator crowds the foosball table," Smithsonian magazine reports (external - login to view).
Perhaps even more impressive, Andraka claims his strips can be altered to detect biomarkers for other diseases.
"What’s so cool about that is its applicability to other diseases…for example other forms of cancer, tuberculosis, HIV, environmental contaminants like E Coli, salmonella," he says (external - login to view). "All for three cents for a test that takes five minutes to run."
The teen wants to mass market his invention so that it's available to everyone. He's already in talks with major corporations to make sure it hits shelves as soon as possible.
"I’ve gotten these Facebook messages asking, 'Can I have the test?'" Andraka tells (external - login to view) Smithsonian magazine. "I am heartbroken to say no."
He hopes that "no" turns into a "yes" soon.
"Essentially what I’m envisioning here is that this could be on your shelf at your Walgreens, your Kmart," he tells (external - login to view) Take Part. "Let’s say you suspect you have a condition…you buy the test for that. And you can see immediately if you have it. Instead of your doctor being the doctor, you’re the doctor."
Andraka's mentor, Anirban Maitra, a professor of pathology and oncology at the prestigious Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a top researcher in pancreatic cancer, has great expectations for the young scientist:
"He is what you would call a genius," Maitra tells (external - login to view) the Washington Post. "He is really full of ideas. I think this kid is going to come up with something quite extraordinary in the years to come."

Jack Andraka, Gordon E. Moore Award Winner - YouTube (external - login to view)

Yahoo! News Canada - Latest News & Headlines (external - login to view)

15 years old, wow! This kid is going places!
I hope he keeps this "help people" feeling and doesn't go corrupt, or others don't lead him to be corrupt.
captain morgan
#3  Top Rated Post
I think that the word 'corrupt' is somewhat misplaced.... Chances are, there will be many groups/companies that will enlighten him on the value of the find... That's probably all it will take to change his focus.

That said, as long as this kid maintains a focus on developing these creative solutions to current problems, we will all be much further ahead for it
Quote: Originally Posted by SerryahView Post

I hope he keeps this "help people" feeling and doesn't go corrupt, or others don't lead him to be corrupt.

For him personally sure, but even if he becomes all about the money in the future (and I don't necessarily see that being what will happen), does it really matter? Just think about what he's potentially achieved. Imagine the availability of early testing strips for sale in the drug store, the same as pregnancy tests are. How many people could potentially be saved by going to the doctor early for treatment with life threatening diseases?

I get what you're saying but even if this is the only accomplishment he achieves in life, it's a far greater achievement than most people have in their lifetimes. If this is the one legacy he ultimately leaves, then I'd slap him on the back for a job well done and say go enjoy your patent millions young man for the rest of your life. If he does contribute more to society than this, then what a blessing to all of us that would be.
Going to put a severe crimp in the lifestyles of the professional fund raisers.
lone wolf
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

Going to put a severe crimp in the lifestyles of the professional fund raisers.

Not likely.... Big Pharma will buy it and profit from it or otherwise suppress it - like marijuana, Thapsia Garganica, lei gong teng or Soursop - as plants can't be patented
Is this kid smart or is this kid only good at reasoning?

Billions of dollars are spent on medical research and there is little to show for it or we might have many cures that the pharma companies are sitting on and will not release until maximum money can be made.
Two things this kid might ensure the marketplace gets this needed test. Secondly if what is
said is true, big pharma should have to release the things its holding if it is a sure cure and
not acted on in a specific time period. No more holding back on cures that people need to
keep selling the old ideas. We as a society have to start clamping down on trans nationals
doing what they please. It is time governments made the rules again not big corporations.

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