High School Freshman Creates Test for Pancreatic Cancer
15-year-old high school freshman Jack Andraka just discovered a scientific breakthrough; the teen created a test that can detect early stage pancreatic cancer.
Andraka earned the top prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. His breakthrough? The teen created a test that can detect one of the toughest cancers to diagnose, pancreatic cancer.
His test not only detects the cancer with 90% accuracy, but it’s also cheaper than other existing tests.
“It detects an abnormal protein that you find in the blood when you have a pancreatic cancer,” explained Dr. Anirban Maitra, professor at Johns Hopkins University. “He conceived this idea and I think the fact that he is 15 makes this whole story more remarkable.”
So why early stage pancreatic cancer? “I got interested in early detection because that’s the best chance of treating cancer,” Andraka said. “The only practical way of doing this is through routine blood tests so that’s what I’ve developed here.”
On top of bragging rights, Andraka also won $75,000 in prize money.