Friday, August 24, 2012

never underestimate a science fair

Never ever underestimate your local school science fair your life may depend on it.

Earlier this year Jack Andraka, a 15 year old US high school student, was acknowledged for inventing an advanced test “to detect pancreatic cancer, ovarian cancer, and lung cancer all in their early stages” – and credits in large part the search engine Google.

Reportedly his test is 168 times faster and more than 26,000 times less expensive and 400 times more sensitive than the current gold standard in the field…. Even a newbie to surviving lung cancer like me knows that early detection is a game changer when it comes to cancer.

This three minute BBC interview is well worth your time to meet this young man.
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He was just "chilling out in biology class" when the idea came to him reports the eventual 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair winner. From interviews I noticed his motivation was the loss of a family member to pancreatic cancer.

At the risk of opening a can of worms here, it seems to me that personal passion can drive invention further than Big Pharma may ever consider, especially when improving detection reduces costs.

Jack, thank you!

by Patrick Leer
Caregivingly Yours, MS Caregiver @


  1. Amazing kid, great post. Keep opening those cans of worms.

  2. I'll take a can of those worms!! :)
    Jackie aka Bama